Honey bees are vital to pollination and vital for our crops and trees, but there's a huge problem… they are dying at an alarming rate.
This is a crisis in Butte County and in Northern California because of how much we rely on agriculture.
Whether we know it or not, we rely on honey bees every day.
They pollinate our crops and trees, and it is estimated that about 1/3 of the food we consume is pollinated by bees.
But now they're dying, and the losses are astronomical.
It's known as colony loss, the drastic, unexpected deaths in honey bee colonies worldwide.
50-years-ago there were about 6 million colonies, now there are fewer than 3 million, and this year is particularly bad.
The USDA says California’s 500,000 honeybee colonies are not enough to pollinate this year's almond crop.
Varroa mites are partly to blame because they're the number one killer of honey bees.
“Varroa is a massive problem. It's a worldwide problem and in Chico, and this area, it has been an incredible problem. I've heard losses of anywhere from 20-60%,” said Lee Rosen, CEO of Healthy Bees LLC.
He says his company has the answer to the problem.
BeesVita Plus. They're calling it a scientific breakthrough for the honey bee crisis.
He said it not only strengthens the hive, but also builds the bees’ immune systems while simultaneously killing the Varrhoa mites. Plus, it's all natural.
“It’s what a bee would get if it flew out of the hive to go foraging. We are replacing the food that the bees don't have naturally,” he said.
Right now, the company is conducting field and trial tests in 5 countries to prove the product's ability to improve honey bee health and control the Varroa mite.
Rosen says the field trials indicate BeesVita Plus is as much 45 percent more effective at controlling the Varroa mites than the other commonly used methods.
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