Foodservice firm Bidfood has launched a campaign to help raise awareness of declining bee colonies in the UK.
Seventy of the top 100 food crops are pollinated by bees, which supplies about 90% of the world's nutrition, however bee populations are declining worldwide at an alarming rate.
Set to run throughout the year, the initiative aims to foster a healthy environment for bees. Bidfood's 24 sites are involved, with activities including building bee ‘hotels', creating bee-friendly gardens and helping local bee keepers by donating sugar and sponsoring local hives.
Bidfood's Paddock Wood depot has three hives with approximately 300,000 bees, and has introduced fruit trees and bee-friendly plants and flowers to help aid the pollination process.
Bidfood's Basingstoke depot has also been collaborating with local beekeepers and honey suppliers, Becky's Bees, by sponsoring 50 hives at its site in Andover. It also works with Hill Farm Oils, Bidfood's supplier of rapeseed oil, by sponsoring the placement of 40 hives across 1,200 acres of rapeseed and borage.
Site excellence manager and lead beekeeper Mike Apps said: "One in three bites of food is only possible thanks to bees pollinating our crops. It's easy to take something so small for granted, but the importance of bees to the food industry, and our survival, is huge. Addressing the issue doesn't necessarily require owning a hive, planting the right flowers can help bees to pollinate and flourish for future generations."
Dr Ivor Davis, director of communications at the British Beekeepers Association, added: "We are delighted to see Bidfood spreading the word about the importance of bees and taking on such an active role at each of its sites."
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