Film Review: Vanishing of the Bees
The agricultural system as we know it is in trouble. Bees are dying off and we don't fully understand the reason why. Although some people seem to think that the disappearing bees are a good thing, because it means that we won't get stung anymore, nothing could actually be further from the truth. Honeybees not only provide us with lovely sweet honey, but more importantly they pollinate hundreds of species of plants that provide us with the food we eat every day. Without this pollination, the plants cannot produce.
Fruits and vegetables such as broccoli, onions, watermelon, cherries, apples and literally hundreds of others are at risk due to the loss of bee colonies. In the U.S.A. one out of every three bites we take owes its existence to the pollinating work of honey bees. It is estimated that the work of bees provides $16 billion dollars of value annually in the U.S. alone. Yet bees have been mysteriously disappearing all over the country and in fact around the globe.
This disappearing act is called Colony Collapse Disorder and it has no known cause. The film shows us the plight of commercial bee keepers David Hackenberg and Dave Mendes as they go about their daily business of fulfilling pollination contracts all over the country. The two Daves travel to Washington to plead their case and even overseas in an effort to discover what is killing the bees.
They posit some alternative theories regarding the causes of Colony Collapse Disorder based on their findings in the U.S., Europe, Asia and Australia. Factory farming practices and industrial pollution may be partly to blame and the filmmakers have some definite theories that hold dire consequences for mankind if the mystery of the disappearing bees is not solved, and soon.
Details of the film on the Vanishing of the Bees site.