Beekeepers around the province will be able to apply for the fifth round of Bee BC funding soon, enabling them to launch creative projects in their communities that support the health of bees in British Columbia.
“Bees have always been part of my life, and as I grew up my passion for them only grew stronger,” said Lana Popham, Minister of Agriculture. “Its amazing to see the unique and innovative ways communities are getting involved through Bee BC to help support the province’s bees and find solutions to keep them safe and healthy.”
The next application intake begins Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, for regional and community-based organizations, beekeeping associations and beekeepers in B.C. Each project is eligible to receive up to $5,000 to fund projects enhancing bee health.
Projects can range from providing education in communities and planting bee-specific forage, to using innovation and technology to help protect and ensure bee health in B.C. The last round of projects included:
- electronic monitoring of hives to assess hive conditions that studied brood quantification, brood-pattern assessment and examining early signs of disease in Rosedale;
- the construction of a “bee barn” to improve overwintering and colony survival in the Kootenays; and
- engaging with youth-led citizen science, monitoring native wildflower lawns and reporting results to the public in the South Coast.
Since launching in 2018, Bee BC has contributed almost $178,000 to fund 42 projects through four rounds of funding. The last round allotted close to $55,000 for 13 projects. Bee BC is a four-year, $400,000 provincial program that makes $100,000 of these funds available to projects investing in bee health each fiscal year.
The Bee BC program provides funding to smaller-scale, community-based projects that support the health of B.C.’s bees. The fund provides support to research, explore, field test and share information about best management practices associated with bee health. The Bee BC program is administered by the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC on behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture.
- May 29, 2019, was proclaimed Day of the Honey Bee in B.C.
- B.C. beekeepers were represented at the 46th Apimondia International Apiculture Congress in Montreal in fall 2019, thanks in part to $20,000 in provincial support.
- Honeybees are an important part of B.C.’s agriculture sector as pollinators of crops, contributing an estimated $560 million to the provincial economy.
- The 2016 total annual economic contribution of honeybee pollination for major insect-pollinated crops (additional harvest value) was estimated at $2.57 billion. (Source: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)
- In 2018, B.C. beekeepers produced over 1,400 tonnes of honey, valued at $13.7 million in farm cash receipts. This represents an 11% increase over 2017 and 7.6% above the previous five-year average receipts.
Apply for Bee BC funding: https://iafbc.ca/bee-bc/
Check out the program guide: https://iafbc.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Bee-BC-Program-Guidelines-2020-formatted.pdf
For information about the Ministry of Agriculture’s apiary program, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/agriculture-seafood/animals-and-crops/animal-production/bees