Illinois Corn, along with the National Corn Growers Association, partners with approximately 40 organizations to form the Honey Bee Health Coalition. This coalition enacts programs that supports a healthy honey bee ecosystem. Our include developing pest management strategies that are not only specific to crops and products but also expand the safety of bees and other pollinators. Moreover, we work to raise awareness about fundamental issues that pollinators face by distributing information and building collaborative networks.
It’s Pollinator Week and this is a time where we recognize the importance of pollinators and encourage their preservation. Whether you know it or not, a healthy honey bee population is integral to a healthy agricultural system. Roughly 30% of all the food that we consume is impacted by honey bee population services. While corn growers do not directly benefit from honey bee pollination, we understand their importance and we are committed to sustaining honey bee populations. Honey bees face numerous threats including, but not limited to: disease, inadequate nutrition, pesticide, hive management, and weather.
Yet, our work includes other pollinators including monarch butterflies. We enact voluntary efforts to help build, repair, and sustain monarch butterfly habitats while ensuring that farmers and operators can maintain flexibility in their operations. One such effort, the Monarch Collaborative, uses the experience of its members to identify the best practices to promote the conservation and development of monarch populations.
Pollinator preservation is an ongoing effort that requires engagement and collaboration. Through our sustained efforts, we can provide a health agricultural landscape for both farmers and pollinators.