Protecting Pollinators,

People & the Planet

 

Bees and other pollinators are threatened

with extinction.

Yet they are vital to life on our Earth.

 
Long-term international or national monitoring of both pollinators and pollination is urgently required to provide information on status and trends for most species and most parts of the world.
— The 2016 assessment report on Pollinators, Pollination, and Food Production, Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) at the United Nations.

The World Bee Project CIC is the first private organisation to launch a global honey bee monitoring initiative to inform and implement actions to improve pollinator habitats, create more sustainable ecosystems, and improve food security, nutrition and livelihoods by establishing a globally-coordinated monitoring programme for honeybees and eventually for key pollinator groups.

Our Mission

Our mission is to increase food security and livelihoods by combining AI and sensor systems with world-leading bee research to provide farmers and the general public with the knowledge and solutions they need to foster healthy habitats for pollinators.

Our Vision

Our vision is to deliver state of the art knowledge directly to the hundreds of millions of smallholder farmers around the world to enhance the contribution of pollinators to food security, livelihoods and national economies.

Our Goals

The World Bee Project is paving the way for innovations that can change the way the world grows food and manages land. The partnership with Oracle will accelerate that opportunity by empowering innovations with the Oracle Platform to produce further insights and make the data actionable to contribute towards The World Bee Project’s goals.

 
 

The World Bee Project partners include Oracle Cloud, the University of Reading and a network of significant partners in India and Hungary

We welcome new strategic collaborations and partnerships.

The Global Threat

Biodiversity decline is the consequence of poorly managed human activity: intensive agriculture, destruction and fragmentation of flowering natural habitats, widespread use of pesticides, pollution caused by waste, the decline of practices based on indigenous and local knowledge, climate change, and the ever-increasing global population.

Biodiversity loss results in honeybee and pollinator declines and vice versa. The two are essentially interlinked. A loss in pollination services has important negative ecological and economic impacts that significantly affect the maintenance of wild plant diversity, wider ecosystem stability, crop production, food security and human welfare.

Pollination is vital to life

Pollinators are economically, socially and culturally important.

There are more than 20,000 species of wild bees alone, plus many species of butterflies, flies, moths, wasps, beetles, birds, bats and other animals that contribute to pollination. Pollinated crops include those that provide fruit, vegetables, seeds, nuts and oils. Many of these are important dietary sources of vitamins and minerals, without which the risks of malnutrition might be expected to increase. Several crops also represent an important source of income in developing countries from, for example, the production of coffee and cocoa.

  More than three-quarters of the world's food crops rely at least in part on pollination by insects and other animals.

Bee health is directly linked to our own health.

In 2016, the Thematic Assessment of Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production, the first-ever issued by  IPBES, estimated that:

  • BEES AND POLLINATORS ARE CRITICAL TO THE FUTURE OF THE WORLD’S 7.6 BILLION PEOPLE AND THE FUTURE OF THE PLANET.

  • OVER THE LAST 50 YEARS, THE VOLUME OF POLLINATION-DEPENDENT AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTION HAS INCREASED BY MORE THAN 300% BUT POLLINATOR NUMBERS HAVE DECLINED.

  • 87% OF THE WORLD’S FLOWERING PLANT SPECIES DEPEND ON POLLINATION.

  • 1.4 BILLION FARMER LIVELIHOODS RELY ON POLLINATORS.

  • 77% OF THE WORLD FOOD SUPPLY DEPENDS ON POLLINATORS.

  • UP TO USD 600 BILLION WORTH OF ANNUAL AGRICULTURAL IS AT RISK AS A RESULT OF POLLINATOR LOSS.

  • TOTAL POLLINATOR LOSS WOULD DECREASE THE PRODUCTION OF THE MOST IMPORTANT DEPENDENT CROPS “BY MORE THAN 90 %”.

 
There are several studies indicating that a wide range of factors have caused the loss of honeybees, but we still do not know which are the most important and how widespread their effects are. Once we understand this then we can develop the appropriate mitigation activities to stop the declines and better protect our honeybees. There are social and political implications too, pollinators such as honeybees are intimately linked to all our livelihoods and wellbeing, so the health of our pollinators has wide-reaching implications for our health and our economy.
— Simon G. Potts, Co -Chair UN IPBES 2016 Report: Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production.
The complex and integrated development challenges we face today demand that decision-making be based on sound science and takes into account indigenous and local knowledge. Embracing science in areas such as pollination will contribute to better-informed policy choices that will protect ecosystem services that are important for both food security and poverty eradication.
— Nik Sekhran, Director/Chief of Profession, Sustainable Development, Bureau for Policy and Programme Support, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
The World Bee Project has global ambitions but laudably addresses problems and potentials at the local level. As a sustainable beekeeping practice based in London, running both urban and rural apiaries, we are delighted to be working with and contributing our data and expertise to the greater cause that is The World Bee Project.
— Dale Gibson, Founder, Bermondsey Street Bees
 

The World Bee Project is a member of the UK Government’s Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) Pollinator Advisory Steering Group (PASG).

 
 
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Pollinators Under Threat, IPBES Report 2016

The World Bee Project supports the emerging holistic paradigm where society and the environment are seen as an indivisible whole, and societies and individuals define wellbeing and prosperity.

The World Bee Project is a UK Community Interest Company (CIC), designed for social enterprises that want to use their profits and assets for the public good. It is the UK equivalent of a US Benefit Corporation, known as B. Corp.