Bee Working Group Report Welcomed By Premier/Ag Minister

Photo courtesy of Morguefile

Premier and Agriculture Minister Kathleen Wynne says a new report provides options for mitigating the potential risk to honey bees from neonicotinoid seed treatments.

The Ontario Bee Health Working Group’s report released this week recommends promoting the use of non-insecticide treated seed.

It also encourages the use of products and tools such as a new seed lubricant and deflectors on planters to reduce the risk of pollinators being exposed to dust containing neo-nics during planting.

The working group included beekeepers, farmers, agri-business reps, scientists and officials from both the federal and provincial governments.

Wynne says Ontario continues to look to the federal government for evidence-based direction on a national approach to the use of neo-nics.

She points out Ottawa regulates pesticides in Canada.

But the Premier says Ontario also needs to show leadership on this issue.

She says the commitment of 2 point 2 million dollars towards researching factors affecting bee health and related best management practices in field crop production is part of that leadership role.

Wynne says the provincial government is going to establish a new Ontario Pollinator Health Working Group.

She says it will build on what the Bee Health Working Group has done and expand it’s focus to address issues and concerns regarding all of Ontario’s pollinators.