Bee Better Certified Engages the Almond Industry

With a robust set of requirements on pesticide use and the highest standards for protecting and restoring pollinator habitat of any food certification, Bee Better Certified represents a new era in biodiversity protection on farms—and what better time to celebrate this program’s growth than during Earth Week? We’ve been working hard to launch BBC within … Read more

IMG_2927 copy bumble bees on sunflower NancyLeeAdamson XSA

Unpacking the standards: Pesticide exposure routes

Pesticide risk to bees is not simple or straightforward. There is indirect risk, such as when an herbicide application kills flowering plants thus limiting bees’ ability to gather pollen and nectar. There are also many direct risks that are not fully understood, such as the full effects of some fungicides on bees. For direct harm … Read more

Bumble bee in Vilicus Farms pollinator field borders_by Jennifer Hopwood, Xerces Society

Unpacking the standards: A closer look at pesticide buffers

If you’ve followed our “Unpacking the Standards” series, you’ve probably noticed that Bee Better Certification requirements work together to respond to the risks of supporting pollinators on working farms. Each section of the standards adds support for healthy bee populations, but only when implemented together do they form a cohesive, successful whole The interdependence of … Read more

slide 13

Unpacking the Standards: Neonicotinoids

Neonicotinoid insecticides are widely used in agricultural and urban settings. Released in the mid-1990s as an alternative to older organophosphate and carbamate insecticides, neonicotinoid insecticides are highly toxic to many invertebrates, including bees. They are systemic, meaning they are absorbed and retained in plant tissues, making all parts of the plant toxic to insects. Even … Read more

IMG_0620 copy bumble bee on buckwheat NancyLeeAdamson XSA

Unpacking the Standards: Fungicides and Mixtures

While insecticides have long been recognized as a threat to bees, fungicides have generally been assumed to be relatively harmless. However, a growing body of research suggests that certain fungicides can be directly and/or indirectly harmful to bees. Additionally, some combinations of pesticides, including some fungicide/insecticide mixtures, may increase the toxicity of one or both … Read more

Del's Orchard MN NYCT Andrena mining bee apple bloom Sarah Foltz Jordan OA (116)

Unpacking the Standards: Bloom-Time Ban on Pesticide Applications

  Bee Better Certified growers use management practices that improve the resilience of their crops and reduce the likelihood of pest outbreak. They also keep track of pest populations on their farm through scouting and monitoring to know when, and if, a pesticide or other intervention is needed to manage a problem that poses economic … Read more

14858852166_o_Bumble bee on buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis)_Debbie Roos, NCCE, flickr-RA

Unpacking the Standards: Preventive Pest Management

Pesticide use can have negative impacts on wild and managed bees living and foraging in agricultural areas. Some pesticides are deadly even at low doses, while others can have less overt,  yet equally troublesome effects on bees – compromising navigation, foraging, and reproductive abilities, which may contribute to long-term population decline. While insecticides cause the … Read more