British Beekeepers Association

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British Beekeepers Association
4th January 2018

National Honey Monitoring Scheme Launched

If you're an amateur or professional beekeeper in the UK, you can register your interest to take part in the new National Honey Monitoring Scheme to provide early warning of environmental threats. Sign up at : http://www.ceh.ac.uk/honey

The CEH which is running the scheme says honey produced by bees can tell us about the health of the countryside - including what flowers bees are feeding on, the pesticides they are exposed to and even what diseases they may have. 

A recent pilot study identified widespread residues of neonicotinoid pesticides in honey samples collected from 130 BBKA beekeepers across the UK. 

https://www.ceh.ac.uk/news-and-media/news/uk-honey-study-finds-one-five-samples-contain-neonicotinoids

CEH says in the long term, they will be able to assess how these threats change over time and vary in different regions. This information will help scientists, apiarists, land-owners and policy makers to make evidence based management and policy decisions. 

What the monitoring scheme will aim to do: 

  • State-of-the-art analysis - DNA metabarcoding & high precision mass spectrometry of honey samples
  • Sample archive - for future research developing new analytics, such as disease detection
  • Provide feedback to participating beekeepers
  • Generate robust scientific data to inform future policy decisions

All beekeepers are asked to register their interest in taking part by emailing [email protected]

The viability of the scheme will depend on sufficient numbers of beekeepers expressing an interest in participating.

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