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Friday, June 27, 2008

Haagan-Dazs Needs our Help!

No, this isn't about buying more ice cream. Though I'm sure they would appreciate it if you did. No, what they want is for all of us to plant flowers in our yards this summer. It's all because of the missing honeybees.

In case you didn't know, the U.S. is in a bee crisis. For some reason, still to be determined, the honeybees our nation's fruit and nut crops rely on for pollination have been disappearing for the past 4 years. We are now at a critical point where the losses are so great that future crop production and *gasp* 40% of Haagan-Dazs flavors could be threatened!

Here's a little lesson in beekeeping 101 for you: Bee keepers truck the bees to orchards for pollination, kind of like touring bee hives for hire. But lately when the bee keepers come back to pick them up when their gig is up? All they find is the queen bee abandoned in the hive and all of the worker bees are *poof* gone.

PBS even did a special about it. You can watch Silence of the Bees online by Clicking Here.

Now Haagan-Dazs has built a website called www.helpthehoneybees.com where you can learn all about what is going on along with what they are doing, and what you can do to help. They are also donating proceeds from any flavor of their ice cream that requires bees for pollinating any of the ingredients used in that flavor to help fund the research to find out what the heck is going on.

Haagan-Dazs is doing more then talking the talk... They are donating $250,000 to research at the University of Davis California and the University of Pennsylvania to help find the cause of Colony Collapse Disorder. They are also encouraging all of us to create some natural habitat in our own yards to help sustain native bee populations like bumble bees.

Recommended plants are:


Cone Flowers
Glory Bushes
Trumpet Vine

It could be a virus brought in by foreign bees killing them off or pesticides that are messing with the bees navigation systems could be to blame. Or it could be genetic defects, pollution, or the way single crops have replaced the native flora that gave the native bees a balanced diet of different types of pollens. It may stem from one cause or a combination of many.

In any case I love nature and I love ice cream so next week I'm going to buy some bee friendly, flowering plants for my yard. And I will not use pesticides.

The bees and Haagan-Dazs are relying on us to help save the little buzzers that are still around. So please consider starting an herb garden or planting some flowering plants to give our little yellow and black striped friends something good to eat.

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