Our pesticide and insecticide use is not only hurting our bodies, but it is negatively impacting our food supply by killing our pollinators. In a recent report, the United Nations warned that 40% of the world’s pollinators are at risk of extinction. Of particular concern are the honey bees. According to Greenpeace, honey bees are responsible for pollinating 90% of earth’s food. They are dying in huge numbers as a result of insecticide use and have been since the early 90s. (source: chemistryworld.com, 2018)
Most recently, one million bees were killed in South Africa and the cause was determined to be poisoning by insecticide (source: bbc.com, 2018). Even when not outright killing them, pesticides negatively impact bee’s functioning, making them less effective parents to larvae (source: dailymail.co.uk, 2018). Bees and other pollinators can be supported in large agricultural settings and backyards alike.
Here are some regenerative methods that you can deploy no matter what scale you are working with:
- Plant native varietals and especially wildflowers. Your local pollinators are healthiest eating the native food to their environment (just like people!).
- Don’t use toxic insecticides. Plant naturally repellent herbs like garlic and basil to keep the pests away instead.
- Don’t use herbicides. Weed by hand instead.
- Plant flowers around all of your vegetables and anywhere else they will grow!
- Plan to have something blooming in your garden all year round.
- Plant milkweed. The butterflies adore it!
We need to all come together and become part of the solution, even if we start small. Let’s do this!
Be well. Be you.
The Farmer’s Footprint Team