The environmental issues that we are facing today can feel daunting, and it is not always easy to see yourself in the solution. But the power of individual action cannot be underestimated. With more local employee led initiatives gaining momentum across Englobe, this Earth Day we’d like to tell you about one of them featuring a small but mighty character, the honeybee.
In 2018, Luc Daigle, Team Leader with Englobe’s Environment Quebec division, had an idea: he wanted Englobe to invest in a unique workforce at the Quebec City office – honeybees!
Since college, Luc had a personal interest in bees and kept a few productive hives of his own. Stemming from his personal experience and passion for bees, he knew well the many social and environmental benefits of urban apiculture projects. He saw the honeybees as a natural fit for Englobe and believed that they could foster a deeper understanding of issues related to agriculture, environment, and urban greening.
Pitching his idea and finding support from management, Luc and team engaged Alvéole, an urban beekeeping company, to bring his idea to life.
Welcome to our hive!
Located at the backend of Englobe’s head office parking lot, the hive bustles with the activity of approximately 50 000 bees. As a group, the honeybees produce 14L’s of honey annually, approximately 215 jars, and play a significant role in the local ecosystem. Travelling up to 5 km to find food, 1 honeybee forages more than 8 million flowers to make a 500-gram jar of honey.
Since establishing the first hive, others at Englobe have taken up the bee cause and are working to foster a local beekeeping culture. With their efforts, we hope to see more Englobe hives championed by dedicated individuals like Luc.
So, Why the Buzz about Bees?
Simply put, bees are perfect pollinators that play a critical role in the global agriculture industry, responsible for one-third of the food we eat, and in maintaining global biodiversity.
The loss of this apex pollinator would be devastating, leading to many dire and irreversible consequences.
- Lower availability of crops and wild plants that provide essential micro-nutrients for human diets. Say goodbye to oranges, avocadoes, apples, almonds, etc.
- Impacts on food security.
- Impacts on health such as an increase in the number of people suffering from vitamin A, iron, and folate deficiency.
- A decrease in native flora that is dependent on healthy pollinator populations.
- And, lets not forget, they produce delicious and nutritious honey! This is a major industry employing thousands worldwide.
Bees represent an essential link between pollination and the preservation of biodiversity, and we need them.
Becoming a Bee Ally – how can you help?
Taking up the worthy ‘bee’ cause is easy, and there are many ways that you can help bees in your community.
Plant pollinator friendly plants in your garden! Here is a good resource to help you get started.
- Support organic farmers who do not use chemicals on their crops.
- Taking that one step farther buying local whenever possible from producers who you can talk with about their crops.
- Support the establishment of local initiatives like the Englobe honeybee project! Take this as an opportunity to learn more about this expert pollinator.
- Spread the word about the importance of bees and their declining population!
- Let the bees live! Leave the bees to their work and do not be alarmed if one buzzes around you.