RAFI is pleased to announce the next phase of our partnership with Burt’s Bees is growing and going wild—for bees! Burt’s Bees’ 2018 Wild for Bees campaign will build on the 15 billion pollinator seeds—that’s 5,000 acres of wildflowers in North Carolina—we’ve already planted. Wild for Bees will celebrate pollinators’ roles in our everyday lives, while strengthening and expanding habitat plantings across our state. And, our small but mighty pollinators will continue to be the deserving beneficiaries.
A Bountiful Partnership
Since 2016, RAFI has been Burt’s Bees primary partner for planting wildflower seeds on farms to provide accessible, nutritious forage to pollinators. Through the plantings, bees and other pollinators can access essential food while having the stability of nesting in one place.
Honeybee Health is a Priority
The Burt’s Bees brand has supported honeybee health since the onset of Colony Collapse Disorder in 2007. When honeybee populations began to climb at an even more alarming rate in recent years, Burt’s Bees began partnering for action. One staggering revelation was that in the winter of 2014-15, 42.1 percent of honeybee populations were lost. This was a call to action for Burt’s Bees that RAFI was proud to support.
Billions…With a Bee
Each year, Burt’s Bees kicks off its honeybee health initiative with a campaign. Two years ago, the “Bring Back the Bees” campaign had a goal of planting one billion seeds of pollinator plants on farm. As of today, over 15 billion seeds have been planted. This year’s campaign “Wild for Bees” is set on making the numbers soar even higher.
Burt’s Bees provides the funds to plant wildflower seeds, and RAFI staff engages in the project by delivering multi-ton pollinator plant seed orders to farms, and then providing technical assistance to farmers throughout the planting process.
A Helping Hand from Farmers
RAFI thanks participating farmers for allowing their farmland to become a natural laboratory, experimenting with incorporating pollinator plant crops into their farming system. The presence of pollinators, including honeybees on farmland, helps support crop pollination, while wildflowers help guard against soil erosion and offer natural pest control by attracting beneficial insects.
Support along the way has come from public agencies, the National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the Farm Service Agency (FSA), who served as supporting partners in the program. NRCS and FSA are federal agencies with existing programs to support farmers and pollinators. The state offices of these agencies worked with RAFI and Burt’s Bees to extend their existing farm support, provided financial and technical support to farmers and helped get the word out to people inclined to take steps to help pollinators.
How to Get Involved This Year:
We always invite public participation! Show your support and help spread awareness for our pollinators.
>>>Follow the hashtag #wildforbees, and use it on your bee and pollinator related posts online.