14 May 2013

Scientist disputes claims honey bees in good shape

8:18 am on 14 May 2013

A bee scientist is challenging the claims by a New Zealand honey processor and exporter that all is well with the world's honey bees.

Peter Bray, managing director of Airborne Honey, believes there's too much negativity when it comes to the health of the world's bees.

He says global hive numbers and world honey production are increasing and they're both signs that the world's bees are doing OK.

But a scientist with Plant and Food Research, Dr Mark Goodwin, says these figures only show that beekeepers are replacing their hives faster than they are losing them and nothing about bee health.

He says it is clear all is not well with bees overseas and the US is reporting 33% losses every year.

Dr Goodwin says he does agree with Peter Bray that the New Zealand beekeeping industry is in better shape than before - with more hives and great returns for its honey.