Bee shortage impacts multiple industries in CO

Posted at 6:49 PM, Feb 04, 2016

Many think of bees a summertime nuisance, but bee keepers say they’re responsible for putting many different foods on your table.

Tim Brod is a bee keeper in Boulder County who warns that the reduction in the bee population is ending business for some backyard bee keepers and may cause the price of honey to sky rocket.

Brod said much of his business is putting together bee packages for people looking to get into the honey business or just simply interested in backyard beekeeping. 

He said this is first year he’s had to cancel tens of thousands of dollars in orders because he simply can’t get enough queens on a reliable timeline.

“The bees aren't strong enough to where in the springtime you could safely walk into an apiary and say, 'Oh these hives are strong, let me take some extra out,'" said Brod.  "Bee keeping is a science and a very serious practice and the age and the days of just having bees and they miraculously get along without any management have ended."

Brod said bee populations are decreasing because of a spread in chemical farming, more viruses within bee populations and less places for them to pollinate. 

"The old paradigm of how people keep bees, or that you can always count on there being an abundance of bees is over, and so that means us as an industry, we're collapsing," said Brod.

Brod said if you would like to be a solution to the problem, the easiest thing you can do is build pollination gardens to help the current bee populations thrive.