Read the article in The Independent about the BBKA pesticide endorsement scandal and how the BBKA Executive has buried the truth

Read the history of the BBKA's endorsement of pesticides

Read the report that finally shocked the BBKA into dropping their endorsement of pesticides

Read about how BBKA censored their own web site

Download the full Open Letter to the BBKA

Key Facts

1. Insecticides are designed to kill insects. Bees are insects. Insecticides kill bees. 'Bee-friendly insecticide' is an oxymoron.

2. Modern insecticides are extremely powerful. Some of them are capable of killing bees in dilutions that are barely detectable by the latest analytical equipment, and have been shown to cause disorientation in bees, likely to result in death, in dilutions that cannot currently be measured.

3. Of the four insecticides endorsed by the BBKA as 'bee-friendly', three are among the top five most toxic in their class. (see Dr Doeser's report). Deltamethrin was introduced around 1984. The 48-hr contact LD50 for honey bees is 1.5 ng/bee (highly toxic). Cypermethrin was introduced around 1977. The 48-hr contact LD50 for honey bees is 20 ng/bee (highly toxic).

4. In the UK, annual spraying of the 4 endorsed pesticides covers an area one and a half the times the size of Wales.

5. The BBKA appears never to have issued any public statement that is critical of any pesticides or pesticide manufacturer.

6. The BBKA has never issued any statement in support of the organic movement in general or the Soil Association in particular, despite the apparent logic of allying themselves with those who are working for an overall reduction in the use of pesticides in agriculture. Instead, they have allied themselves with those who have a vested interest in increasing the use of pesticides.

7. The BBKA failed to support their colleagues in Germany, Italy, France, Spain and Belgium in a call for the systemic, neurotoxic, neonicotinoid insecticides Imidacloprid, Fipronil, Thiamethoxam and Clothianidin to be removed from the European list of permitted agricultural chemicals.

8. The BBKA failed to support their German colleagues following the disastrous incident in May 2008, when millions of bees were killed by Bayer's neonicotinoid pesticide Clothianidin.

9. The BBKA did not consult its members before accepting donations from agri-chemical companies in return for use of the BBKA logo.


Neonicotinoid pesticides (synthetic derivatives of nicotine) are probably the most serious man-made danger to bees, birds and other wildlife ever introduced into the environment: they are more than 7,000 times more toxic than DDT, according to recent research.

Watch the video below for a summary of the situation in the USA. You might like to listen to a recent interview with Tom Theobald, the Colorado beekeeper who exposed the EPA's illegal licensing of Clothianidin.

BBKA/Pesticide Endorsement Update 16th January 2011

At the meeting on 15th January, the British Bee Keepers Association executive pre-empted the motion from Twickenham BKA and forced a change to the wording, which, had it been voted through, would have stopped them accepting money from pesticide companies under any pretext. They have thus demonstrated that, despite considerable disquiet among the membership, they have no intention of cutting financial ties with the pesticide manufacturers.

You can read all about it here -

The questions in the Open Letter remain un-answered.

Neonicotinoids and Bees

UK Stats and refs

stats on usage
details of each survey undertaken and more breakdown by crops
details of all the monitoring for residues in crops


Tom Theobald on the EPA 'leak', plus other background on this

Bee decline could be down to chemical cocktail interfering with brains

Soil Association bee briefing

$15 Billion Bee Murder Mystery Deepens

'Nicotine Bees' Population Restored With Neonicotinoids Ban

EPA memo reveals concern that pesticide causes bee deaths

Beekeepers want government to pull pesticide

Bees in freefall as study shows sharp US decline

Pesticide industry involvement in EU risk assessment puts survival of bees at stake

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