National Pollinator Health Strategy Released Today

By Jerry Hayes, Monsanto Honey Bee Health Lead
May 19, 2015 1:00 PM ET

Today, U.S. President Barack Obama’s Pollinator Health Task Force released the National Strategy to Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators (Strategy). The Strategy highlights the importance and benefits of public-private partnerships to improve pollinators’ health and habitats.

Notably, the Strategy identifies several partnerships that are making significant contributions to pollinator health. The Honey Bee Health Coalition (HBHC) is one of these partnerships, and I’m proud to say Monsanto is a member. HBHC is a diverse collaborative effort convened by The Keystone Policy Center and consists of more than 30 organizations and agencies from across the food, agriculture, government, conservation and beekeeping sectors. The HBHC provided a response to today’s news from the Pollinator Health Task Force.

I’m also pleased that the Pollinator Health Task Force recognized the work being done by the National Fish and Wildlife Fund (NFWF) to bring public and private organizations together to restore monarch butterfly habitat. Monsanto is partnering with NFWF as well as supporting monarch research, education and habitat restoration with commitments totaling more than $4 million over the next three years. The company acknowledges that it will take more than just funding, though. As my colleague Eric Sachs expressed in a recent blog post regarding our recent monarch commitments: “We’re also lending our innovative team of scientists, who collaborate with a range of partners to help ensure the monarch butterfly migration doesn’t become a journey of the past.”

I encourage you to take a moment and read about the Strategy, the HBHC response and our recent monarch commitments.

Today’s announcement from the Pollinator Health Task Force is an important recognition of the value of pollinators to both food production and the natural environment. At Monsanto, our vegetable seed and canola seed businesses depend on healthy pollinators. We also believe that through collaboration and identification of the right opportunities where plant, biological and environmental science and knowledge can best be leveraged, our company and partners can have real, meaningful, positive impact on pollinator health and habitats.

To learn more about our collaborative efforts to improve honey bee health and monarch butterfly populations, here are some helpful links:

Billy Brennan