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Important bee-friendly flower and plant purchasing advice

Thursday, May 21st 2015 10:22:26am

MEDIA ADVISORY

Making informed choices at Canadian plant and garden centres

Last year, Friends of the Earth tested flowers in 18 cities across North America and discovered over half contained bee-toxic neonicotinoids. (See Gardeners Beware 2014).

This year's Canadian site test results will be published in June 2015. In the interim, Friends of the Earth Canada is calling on consumers to ask their garden centre's staff what is being done to stop the use of neonicotinoids.

This chart and the info link below it, represents the best current and available advice from Friends of the Earth Canada to help gardeners make the best purchasing choices for bee-friendly flowers at Canadian garden centres.



For additional detail go to: http://foecanada.org/en/retailer-actions-on-neonicotinoids

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For more information, or to schedule interviews, please contact:
Beatrice Olivastri, CEO, Friends of the Earth Canada, (613) 724-8690, beatrice@foecanada.org.

Friends of the Earth Canada (www.foecanada.org) is the Canadian member of Friends of the Earth International, the world’s largest grassroots environmental network campaigning on today’s most urgent environmental and social issues.

Bees are critical to food security
Two-thirds of the food crops humans eat everyday require bees and other pollinators to successfully produce a crop. However, the health and productivity of honeybees, bumblebees, and other pollinators are in great peril and populations are dwindling worldwide.

Although honey bee losses have been linked to multiple factors, a strong and growing body of scientific evidence has shown that the use of neonicotinoid pesticides are a major contributing factor to bee die-offs.

What are Neonicotinoids?
  • Neonicotinoids (neonics) are systemic pesticides that are absorbed into plant tissues. Once applied, they spread through the entire plant, including the stems, flowers, pollen and nectar.
  • Neonicotinoids can poison bees directly, and even low-level exposure can lead to sub-lethal effects such as altered learning, impaired foraging and immune suppression.
  • Neonicotinoids are used on virtually 100% of corn seed, and on a large percentage of soy, wheat, and canola seed.
  • Neonicotinoids are applied to crops using seed coatings, sprays, soil drenches and granules.