A leading supplier of high-quality honey to the American industrial baking and food production markets, Honey Holding I, Ltd., recently formed a partnership with Beckert Bees in Vidor, Texas, to reduce dependence on foreign-sourced honey and to create new jobs in an economically hard-hit area. Honey Holding and Beckert Bees hope to provide direct and indirect employment in the southeast Texas region, and to actively promote beekeeping as a profession.
In the late 1940s, the United States was home to 6 million bee colonies, a number that has declined over the years to about 2.5 million. Honeybees play a vital role in the American food supply: Almonds and other major crops rely on pollination by honeybees for their propagation. Cross-pollination is responsible for the healthy growth of about a third of the world’s cultivated crops, and almost all of the world’s wild plants.
Bees also help the economy: Every year, Honeybees produce about $150 million worth of honey and pollinate a total of about $15 billion worth of crops. Any loss in the bee population means less American economic strength abroad.
Bees also serve as important early indicators that something may be wrong in the environment. When bee populations decline, environmental scientists know to look for causes that could affect many other species, including humans.