The “Three Pillars of Sustainable Agriculture” are: 1. Profit over the long term, 2. Stewardship of our nation's land, air and water, and 3. Quality of life for farmers, ranchers and their communities. The Bee Girl organization believes that we need to do better then “sustainable.” Why? Because sustaining apiculture and agriculture “as is” isn’t good enough. We need a regenerative beekeeping system, one that builds and grows our profits, environment, and communities. Read on for our current practices and goals.
Bee Girl’s Regenerative Beekeeping Practices
Profit over the long term:
1. a) Run a bee health-centered operation that functions in stable markets (i.e. not being completely reliant on almond pollination to turn a profit).
1. b) A model that is diversified: honey sales, education, research, etc.
1. c) Establish relationships with local retailers, restaurants, and individual customers.
1. d) Establish climate change mitigation plan to avoid/recover from extreme fires, hurricanes, flooding, drought, extended or shortened winters, etc.
1. e) Keep a reasonable amount of hives to meet honey product and research and education demands, no more.
Stewardship of our nation's land, air and water:
2. a) Have as much control over the supply chain as possible.
2. b) Partner with local landowners/managers to plant crops that regenerate soil, and feed bees.
2. c) Analyze carbon footprint on an annual basis, and takes steps to decrease impact.
2. f) Consider rare and sensitive bee species (location and size of apiaries, disease control).
2. d) Practice Varroa mite control to decrease the spread of disease.
2. e) Practice humane treatment of large pests (skunks, bears) by taking preventive measures (electric fencing, apiary placement, etc).
Quality of life for farmers, ranchers and their communities
3. a) Enable our staff/beekeepers to spend time at home in their communities with their friends and family.
3. b) Be philanthropic in our communities, and in the beekeeping industry.
3. c) Pay a fair, living wage.
3. d) Encourage and empower employees to have upward mobility in the company.
3. e) Have a specific policy to pay men and women the same wage for the same job.
3. f) Be transparent with success strategies.