People and bees go together - even if there is the occasional misstep resulting in a sting. We rely on bees to pollinate everything from our favourite flowers to the crops we need for food. In Alberta, our major cash crop Hybrid Canola would not survive if the bees stopped flitting from plant to plant. If you take into account all the economic factors and spin-offs from the province's canola crop, about 80,000 bee colonies ensure the viability of a 4 billion dollar sector. Yes - billions.
With bee populations in decline around the world, there is good reason to worry about not just the economic consequences, but what it could eventually mean to our food supply.
Freelance broadcaster Don Hill talked to Dr. Leonard Foster, an Associate Professor in Biochemistry at UBC and a Genome Canada funded researcher studying bee populations and genetics. As you can hear in our latest podcast installment
, Dr. Foster says there is hope.