AgriFutures Australia receives Australian Government grant to rebuild the bushfire-devastated honey bee and pollination industry

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AgriFutures Australia has welcomed a $600,000 grant from the Australian Government for research, development and extension (RD&E) to support the industry as it continues its recovery from the 2019-20 Summer bushfires.

During the 2019-20 bushfire crisis an estimated 15.6 million hectares of native Australian forest was destroyed. This has severely compromised the industry’s $14.2 billion per year contribution to the Australian economy, from vital pollination services.

Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud said the grant would help the Australian honey bee industry to build resilience and bounce back.

“This funding is great news for our beekeepers and will help them get their buzz back and build resilience for future disasters,” Minister Littleproud said.

“The grant will help the Australian honey bee industry undertake key research about how to help rebuild hives after bushfires.

“The research will help beekeepers understand how decreased forest resources after fires affects honey bee biosecurity and nutrition.

“It will also investigate best practice supplementary feeding and hive management technology.”

Bushfire recovery research and development is part of the industry’s Bushfire Recovery Plan, which was released by the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council and AgriFutures Australia 2021.

For more information refer to Minister Littleproud’s media release.

Key points

  • The 2019-20 Summer bushfires destroyed an estimated 15.6 million hectares of native Australian forest, severely compromising the viability of the honey bee industry and the plant industries that rely on critical pollination services.
  • The honey bee and pollination industry Bushfire Recovery Plan and six point action plan identify short-term support measures and longer-term industry change initiatives to ensure its ongoing viability.
  • The AgriFutures Honeybee & Pollination Program supports R&D to ensure a productive, sustainable and more profitable Australian beekeeping industry and secure the pollination of Australia’s horticultural and agricultural crops.

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