Pollinator Health is not Just Farmers’ Responsibility

A bumblebee on clover (note: not a honeybee)

The Ontario government recently rolled out its Pollinator Health Action Plan, a draft of which had been put forward in January, 2016, and up for discussion. The final product, found here, is remarkably similar, and, as many have commented, it’s a solid, balanced approach to improving honeybee and native pollinator health in the province.

The devil, as they say, is in the details, and one commercial beekeeper, Hugh Simpson, owner of Osprey Bluffs Honey, hopes to see some real leadership within the province in implementing this plan.

In the interview below, Simpson outlines the strengths of the plan (there are many) as he sees them, but also highlights some areas of caution, such as the need to engage a diverse and perhaps unconventional group of stakeholders to achieve the plan’s goals. Also discussed is the need for government cooperation (but not necessarily responsibility) for several of the initiatives, and encouragement to look far beyond farmland to achieve pollinator food and habitat goals.