Buzz the Bee has buzzed off from Honey Nut Cheerios boxes in Canada, a strategic move by General Mills for its ‘Bring Back the Bees’ initiative.
“One third of the foods we depend on for our survival are made possible by the natural pollination work that bees provide,” says Emma Eriksson, director of marketing for General Mills Canada. “With ongoing losses in bee populations being reported across Canada, we're issuing a call to action to Canadians to help plant 35 million wildflowers – one for every person in Canada.”
Honey Nut Cheerios, in partnership with Vesey’s Seeds, is giving away free wildflower seed packs to help reach its goal, which is already 77 percent completed, according to the Bring Back the Bees website. Eriksson says, “We know Canadians are concerned about the state of things for our bees. Planting wildflowers is an easy, tangible way they can help – and it can be a fun, family activity as well.”
According to a release, in the winter of 2014, Ontario beekeepers lost 58 percent of the province’s honeybee population, and after the winter of 2015, 38 percent was lost in Ontario and 16 percent of all Canadian bee colonies were lost.
Marla Spivak, professor of entomology at the University of Minnesota, says, “there are a range of threats to Canada's bee population, but among the biggest are the elimination of flowering plants and ground cover in urban and rural areas alike. The goal of planting 35 million wildflowers will go a long way toward helping provide the natural habitat and food supply that is essential for healthy, sustainable bee colonies.”