You read a lot about bees, honey and mead but are they really that important?
Well, the answer seems to be a big yes.
Even if you don’t like bees, we all need them. They are responsible for much of our food by acting as a key pollinator. It is estimated that around one third of our global food supply is pollinated by bees.
Without bees most of our plants and crops would die and we would be struggling to find sufficient food to keep us all alive.
To grasp the enormity is the bee’s contribution to pollination these are a selection of the crops pollinated by bees: Almonds, apples, apricots, avocados, blueberries, cantaloupes, cashews, coffee, cranberries, cucumbers, eggplants, grapes, kiwis, mangoes, okra, peaches, pears, peppers, strawberries, tangerines, walnuts and watermelons and the list goes on.
Without bees, these crops would struggle to exist and certainly not in the volumes needed for human demand.
The message is we must work harder to protect, preserve grow the worlds bee numbers.
The ironic thing is that bees do not pollinate our food intentionally. They do what they do because they need to eat. Bees get all the protein they need in their diet from pollen and all the carbohydrates they need from nectar. They are flower-feeders, but as they move from flower to flower, they end up providing this valuable pollination service almost as a biproduct.
We clearly need bees but the problem is they are declining in number.
Some facts about bees and honey
1. Bees are the world’s most important pollinators of food crops.
2. Without bees, we would not have many fruits, vegetables and nuts that we enjoy today.
3. Bees help to keep ecosystems in balance by pollinating plants.
4. By pollinating plants, bees help ensure that there is food for other animals in the ecosystem.
5. Bees are a vital part of the global food chain.
6. Bees provide us with honey, a healthy and delicious natural sweetener.
7. Honeybees are the only species of bee that produces honey in commercial quantities.
8. Bee pollen is a superfood packed with nutrients and antioxidants.
9. Beeswax has many uses, including being a natural and effective skin moisturizer.
10. Bee venom has been shown to have potent anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties when used medically.
Why are they declining in numbers?
Presently, there is an ongoing debate surrounding the disappearance of bees and it seems clear that pesticides are a main culprit.
Since the end of World War II, the use of pesticides in agriculture has increased exponentially but it is feared that the widespread use of some pesticides is having a detrimental impact on the health of bees.
We are destroying wild habitats in which bees traditionally get their food.
Also, and more concerning is the growing worry that climate change has also led to a disruption in the synchronization of flower opening and bee hibernation. This also causes bees to die.
Simply put, we are not that good for bees.
The impact this can have on Honey based drinks like Honey Rum & Mead
We know that honey is one of the first ingredients to be included in drink. Records show that the process of including honey in drinks began at least 1,000 years ago and most probably a long time before that. It was most popular due to the discovery that honey could be fermented. This means honey could be broken down and alcohol produced within the drink. A drink we call Mead.
Mead is produced in many forms and tastes ranges. It is common to see version of mead that includes fermented honey and can be mixed with wine, fruit flavours such as Orange & Elderflower . It also can be found including spices such as cinnamon, vanilla, ingredients.
Its growing use in the spirit world is impressive particularly with rum. Indeed, you will see a wonderful range of flavoured honey drinks in our portfolio which are all extremely popular.
These huge variations of the use of honey are extremely popular and gloriously tasteful. But one thing is very clear no bees no honey-based drinks! So, if you enjoy the delights of sipping this ancient drink as we do then give a thought to how you can help us protect our global bee numbers.
Please feel free to let us know your ideas how we can help build the world’s bee population, we are actively seeking ways to put hives around our brewery.
Can you think of any other innovate ideas? We will send you a bottle of Honey Rum or our famous Lindisfarne Mead if your idea gets picked up and implemented.