Neonicotinoid, a neurotoxin found in most pesticides is present in around three-quarters of approximately 200 honey samples from all around the world.  This situation is alarming because honey is the main food source of the bees’ offspring. Neonicotinoid is well known for killing bees and harming their ability to produce honey. Indeed, pesticides lower the reproduction rate of bees and disorient them, making it harder for them to find their way back to their hives. It is possible to imagine that honey quality will decrease in the coming years, but also think that poisoned honey will also affect human health.

Even though the recent findings do not show any relationship between Neonicotinoid and the colony collapses- when workers bees abandon their hive – it gives an insight of another environmental factor that is putting an unnecessary strain on pollinators which are essential to the food chain.

One of the reason why there is such a high percentage of honey contamination is that this pesticide is not banned in most countries. “People are planting flowers. They are buying flowers in garden centers. These flowers are loaded with pesticides,” reported Alexandre Aebi, co-author of the study, “For human consumption, we have very strict rules. There are no such things for garden centers.”

The European union and the United States of America are now considering their restrictions regarding pesticides, classifying neonicotinoids as potentially harmful for bees. The US has already drafted rules to maintain its use while minimizing their harm to the insects. However, it is worth asking whether governments should keep using this poison knowing how harmful it can be.

Grenic M. – ERV Green Reporters