WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. and LEWISBURG, Pa. and ISTANBUL, Oct. 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- At the 45th annual Apimondia International Apiculture Congress in Istanbul; in the midst of a global epidemic of honey bee colony losses, America's Healthy Bees, LLC, unveiled BeesVita Plus (www.BeesVitaPlus.com), a scientific breakthrough in the form of a next generation nutritional system that, according to preliminary tests in five countries, shows signs of bolstering honey bees' immune systems, strengthening their resistances to pesticides, and improving overall health.
World's Top Beekeeper
"This is the first significant scientific advancement in the treatment of honey bee health since colony loss syndrome began a decade ago; when suddenly, around the world, billions of bees started dying in record numbers – and they are still dying at faster rates today than in past years," says Philip McCabe, president of the International Federation of Beekeepers' Associations. "We now have a scientific formulation that provides us with a fighting chance to combat environmental and man-made forces that are attacking colonies."
BeesVita Plus is a first-of-its kind, all-natural, organic, anti-oxidant-rich, pre-packaged dietary supplement patty that is placed in honey bee colonies. Honey bees eating BeesVita Plus, opposed to typical sugar water solutions fed by most beekeepers; receive precise amounts of essential nutrients and anti-oxidants that improve health.
BeesVita Plus is being tested out-in-the-field and in laboratories by the United States Department of Agriculture, by domestic and foreign university biologists and at agricultural research centers in America, Argentina, Brazil, Italy, Turkey and by beekeepers in California, Florida, Pennsylvania and elsewhere.
According to Federation statistics described at Apimondia, honey bee colony losses in some countries are as high as 60 percent. The global average is about 20 percent. In the United States, losses range from 28 to 59 percent.
"Around the world, honey bee colony loss is a pandemic; millions of honey bees are dying," explains Lee Rosen, Chairman and CEO of West Palm Beach, Florida-based Healthy Bees, LLC, (www.HealthyBeesLLC.com), maker of BeesVita Plus.
"No one knows the cause, but clearly nutrition plays an important role," he explains.
According to various scientific and environmental groups, climate, parasites, pesticides, pollution, stress, viruses and poor beekeeping practices are among the suspected causes of colony loss.
Rosen continues, "There are tests showing that BeesVita Plus strengthens the immune systems of honey bees, thereby lessening colony loss."
USDA Remarkable Results
Biologists at the United States Department of Agriculture Bee Research Lab in Beltsville, Maryland conducted several tests included one measuring destructive free radicals in honey bees.
Paraquat Pesticide Study
One test involved exposing honey bees to the pesticide Paraquat.
One group was fed a water solution of BeesVita Plus mixed with Paraquat. The other group was given a sugar-water solution mixed with the pesticide.
The results showed, "reduced oxidative potential." In other words, "Bees fed BeesVita Plus and Paraquat showed signs of efficient resistance against the damaging effects of the pesticide compared to bees fed Paraquat in sugar water only," according to the lead USDA researcher.
Another USDA study also concluded that BeesVita Plus contained as much as 38 times more anti-oxidants than the leading honey bee feeding solution currently available on the market today.
Tests on honey bees that consumed BeesVita Plus showed that there were no traces of the formulation in their systems. This means the bees fully digested and absorbed the all-natural formulation without any residue being passed on to the end-consumer in honey and pollen products.
Other Test Results
Other tests around the world concluded that BeesVita Plus increased the overall weight of honey bee hives; indicating individual weight gain. Fat insulates the body and stores and releases energy.
Colony populations were stabilized; meaning no signs of colony loss.
Queen bees lived longer; indicating a possible overall increase in honey bee longevity.
Beekeepers Losing Hives
"When I started my beekeeping business more than 40 years ago, my honey bees lived for two months, now they don't even live for two weeks," says David Hackenberg, Founder & CEO of Hackenberg Apiaries of Lewisburg, Pennsylvania and Dade City, Florida. So, we've got to find something that feeds our bees to make them healthy. That's why I'm experimenting with BeesVita Plus."
"Initial indications show that bees are attracted to BeesVita Plus, unlike other feeding products that we have previously tested." He adds, "This is an encouraging and important signal since our bees typically don't even look at the (man-made) stuff we try to feed them," says Hackenberg, co-chairman of the U.S. National Honey Bee Advisory Council.
Necessity: Mother of Invention
BeesVita Plus creator, Francesca Del Vecchio, PhD, is a genetic biologist and family farmer. She says, "I invented BeesVita Plus out of necessity; when bees in the agricultural community where I live in Italy started dying in masses."
Del Vecchio continues, "I am a scientist and so I started looking for answers in my laboratory. The result led me to create the exclusive BeesVita Plus formulation that I am now bringing to the world to help save honey bees."
Honey Bee Statistics
Honey bees are crucial to the world's agriculture industry. Bees pollinate an estimated $15 billion of U.S. crops, ranging from almonds to zucchini, each year, according to USDA.
The worldwide honey bee population is estimated at 83.4 million colonies, according to the International Federation of Beekeepers' Associations.
China is the leading honeybee and honey producer in the world with an estimated population of 10 million colonies. Turkey claims to have the second-largest number of colonies at 7.9 million.
According to Bee Culture Magazine, the United States is ranked 10th for the most honey bee colonies in the world but is the second largest honey producer.
Honey bee colony and honey production rankings vary between sources.
The average retail price of American honey in August 2017 was $7.26 per pound compared to $3.83 in August 2006, according to the U.S. National Honey Board.
Colony Losses & Pesticides
The United States has some of the world's highest colony loss rates, according to Bee Informed, a not-for-profit consortium of U.S. university bee biologists. These staggering losses have resulted in lower yields of certain crops dependent on honey bee pollination and higher honey prices. Some blame American colony loss rates on the use of pesticides in the U.S. that have been banned by other countries.
Beekeepers Critical of Government & Pesticide Companies
Upward of 12,000 beekeepers are attending Apimonda in Istanbul. Many, especially those from the United States, complain that government agencies in many countries fail to implement solutions to curtail colony loss.
Many beekeepers are critical of pesticide makers. They charge those companies with downplaying the impact of pesticides on honey bee deaths.
Scientists, environmentalist and beekeepers seek stronger regulations that include preventing the use of systemic, nicotine-based, neonicotinoid pesticides that are sprayed on the soil and absorbed by plants. Initially, it was believed that these pesticides would not harm bees but recent evidence indicates otherwise.
Studies show during pollination, honey bees are poisoned. The pesticides attack their neurological systems. They are unable to navigate their way back to the hive. They die in the field.
Stressful Pollinator Transport
Beekeepers transport their hives, in colony boxes, to farms where honey bees fly from plant to plant -- pollinating crops. Critics charge mass transportation of hives causes deadly stress. Truck-driving beekeepers say they drive the latest air-ride technology vehicles to transport bees, thus, minimizing stress.
Nutrition & Convenience
Many beekeepers, especially during the winter months, when pollen and nectar are non-existent, feed their hives sugar-water or handmade sugar cakes as a replacement. "These are ineffective carbohydrate mixtures composed of sugar that are void of scientifically-formulated essential nutrients and anti-oxidants found in BeesVitaPlus," explains Rosen.
He also emphasizes, "Beekeepers complain they spend excessive time and labor making bee-feed and then serving it to the colonies. Beekeepers tell us they need an easy-to-use pre-packaged product that provides proper and effective nutrition."
21st Century Beekeepers
According to the USDA, in 1940, there were more than 6 million beekeepers in the U.S. The USDA says it is developing a program to identify and recruit young people interested in honey bees; assuring there will be a new generation of American beekeeper in the 21st century. Other countries face similar challenges and are creating similar youth programs.
More About BeesVita Plus
Headquarters: Miami Beach & West Palm Beach, Florida.
BeesVita Plus is a patent-pending product that requires no special U.S. and many other government approvals because it contains already-evaluated natural elements. It is manufactured and packaged near St. Paul, Minnesota.
The product is sold in pre-packaged 800 gram patties. The product is available in a box of 32 patties, priced at $320.00.
BeesVita Plus is also sold in varying size bags of water-soluble powder-mix.
The consumption rate of each patty varies depending on how many bees are in the hive and how hungry they are. During fall and winter months the consumption rate of each patty increases due to the lack of pollinating and nectar-rich plants close to the colony from which the bees can draw food.
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SOURCE Healthy Bees, LLC