Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Amazing Honey, and the Endangered Bees That Produce It

Over the course of this year, I've developed a real fondness for honey. The stuff is amazing. Every variety tastes different -- from the sunny sweetness of orange blossom honey to the dark syrupy flavor of blackberry honey. It preserves itself. It has natural antibacterial properties. It helps to heal wounds. (For more on the antibacterial properties of honey and other bee products, I have an article up at eHow. I'm working on another for Suite101 regarding its wound healing properties.)

Imagine my dismay when I learned that honeybees are endangered.

I found it hard to believe, but they are. Since the 1980s, mite infestations have been contributing to a great bee die-off. According to the New York Times and PBS, they are disappearing from the wild, and farmed bees are not fairing much better. Without bees, there will be no honey or honey products, no beeswax, and a huge drop in agriculture pollination -- not to mention a score of other effects.

I am a bit bemused by the fact that this plight is not well known to the public. I continue to buy my pounds and pounds of honey (I go through this stuff almost faster than I go through oatmeal) as if nothing is going on.

What will we do if we just wake up one day...and the bees are gone?

Kinda scares me. o.0

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