The Almond Board of California (ABC) thanks the White House, USDA, and the many other agencies on the federal Pollinator Health Task Force for their diligent work developing the federal strategy to understand, prevent and recover from critical declines in pollinator populations, particularly honeybees.
Without pollinators there would be no almonds – nor many of the other crops that are essential to a stable, nutritious food supply. The Task Force's goal of reducing overwinter losses to 15 percent is an ambitious and achievable standard that would ensure stability in the food supply, certainty for growers, and a variety of affordable, American-grown produce for consumers. We stand ready to help the Task Force meet its objectives of restoring or enhancing 7 million acres of quality habitat for pollinators and bolstering pollinator health research.
Because of the vital role honeybees play in almond production, the Almond Board of California has invested $1.3 million in research since 1995 to improve bee nutrition, effectively manage pest and diseases, improve breeding stock, and assess the impact of pesticides used on almonds. Almond growers have also partnered with other stakeholders to provide bee habitat in and around orchards. We look forward to continuing to build upon those efforts and work with the Task Force on this critical issue.