Several hundred protesters took to the streets of Warsaw last week to make their voices heard on the large decline in honey bees in Poland. Sporting colourful bee costumes and luminous jackets, and carrying a mixture of anti-GMO placards and giant bees on sticks, the protesters marched through the capital of Poland.
The aim of the protest was to highlight that the situation is getting worse and worse, Mr Janusz Kasztelewicz, president of the Polish Professional Beekeepers Association, told TOK FM Radio. “We are witnessing a dangerous phenomenon which is an outcome of Western agricultural methods, originating in the United States, France, Germany and Italy. The bees are leaving their hives in increasing numbers and simply never returning.“
According to Maciej Rysiewicz, publisher and editor of the periodical “The Beekeeper’s Calendar”, one of the main problems is the scale of the use of toxic pesticides. “If we do not respond to the danger, Poland will end up with similar problems to those in China. The excessive use of toxic chemicals is killing the bees, especially the most harmful ones containing neonicotinoids which also poison people.”
Poland is one of the leading producers of honey in Europe. Nevertheless, honey consumption is significantly smaller than in the rest of the European Union. Annual honey production in Poland amounts to approximately 18,000 tons.
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