Beekeepers And Farmers Must Work Together To Address Bee Issues: Hugh Simpson

Bee hives are winterized in a Manitoba bee yard. Lyndsey Smith, 2013

Commercial beekeeper Hugh Simpson believes farmers and beekeepers have to collaborate, communicate and co-operate to ensure Ontario’s bee population remains strong and healthy.

Simpson is a founding member of the Independent Commercial Beekeepers Organization. The group was founded by like-minded beekeepers who make a living keeping bees as livestock based on economics, logic and practical decision making.

“Farmers and beekeepers have a long history of working together and are partners in agriculture,” says Simpson who believes all stakeholders have to look past the emotion that runs high on the pollinator health issue.” Commercial beekeeping for profitability is complex and you need to make the right kinds of management and strategic choices,” he adds. caught up with Simpson at the recent Day For Bees And Agriculture held at his farm near Collingwood, Ontario. He shared his thoughts on what he calls the “Three Ps” of bee management and how an integrated approach to managing pests, poor nutrition and pesticides is the key to success.

Related: Honey producers file class action lawsuit against seed treatment makers Syngenta and Bayer.

Hear this interview here, if you can’t see the embedded player.


Bernard Tobin

Bernard Tobin is Real Agriculture's Ontario Field Editor. AgBern was raised on a dairy farm near St. John's, Newfoundland. For the past two decades, he has specialized in agricultural communications. A Ryerson University journalism grad, he kicked off his career with a seven-year stint as Managing Editor and Field Editor for Farm and Country magazine. He has received six Canadian Farm Writers' Federation awards for journalism excellence. He's also worked for two of Canada's leading agricultural communications firms, providing public relations, branding and strategic marketing. Bern also works for Guelph-based Synthesis Agri-Food Network and talks the Real Dirt on Farming.


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