A significant portion of our dietary reliance hinges upon the proper pollination of crops. 

Managed honey bees stand out as the most effective means for ensuring the successful pollination of a diverse array of crops, including but not limited to top fruits, soft fruits, oilseed rape (OSR), field beans, and borage.

Modern fields and orchards, characterised by their expanded sizes, coupled with the escalated expenses associated with fertilizers, have accentuated the advantages of regulated pollination. Strategic introduction of the appropriate number of honey bee colonies within or around crops at the optimal juncture ensures pollination. This, in turn, magnifies yield and enhances the quality of harvested fruit. In contrast, populations of wild pollinators (such as bumblebees, solitary bees, and hoverflies) are currently dwindling, and the majority of untamed honey bee colonies have succumbed to varroa mites. These are additional rationales underscoring the mounting significance of pollination management for both farmers and the environment.

During the early stages of spring, when their presence is most critical, natural pollinators like bumblebees and solitary bees are relatively scarce. In comparison, honey bee colonies emerging from winter hibernation boast a substantial workforce of 25,000 to 30,000 bees, contributing to a considerably larger and more active pollination effort.


Oilseed Rape (OSR) - Research conducted in Canada has demonstrated a 15-20% enhancement in seed yield through the introduction of two honey bee colonies per hectare (Sabbahi, 2005). Additionally, the presence of bees results in uniform, early pod formation, reducing the flowering period by nearly four days, potentially aiding disease control. For oilseed rape grown for seed production, bee presence elevates germination success from 83% to 96% and increases oil content by approximately four percent.

Field Beans - Managed honey bee colonies can prompt a greater number of pods to form on the lower trusses of field beans, contributing to a potential yield increase of 1380 kg/ha.

Borage - Maximum yield in borage cultivation hinges on robust pollination. Since borage flower heads remain open for just one day, strategic placement of honey bee colonies immediately before flowering is crucial. Trials in New Zealand revealed a 20% yield increase when bees were introduced to the crop.

Top Fruits and Soft Fruits - Managed pollination benefits both top fruits and soft fruits. The resulting superior quality features higher seed content, leading to better-shaped fruit and increased yields. Apples, for instance, exhibit elevated calcium content and extended storage life due to insect pollination. Honey bees should be introduced when approximately five percent of blossoms are present to optimize their immediate activity. Premature introduction might divert bees towards alternative food sources.

Polytunnels or greenhouses can also harness honey bee pollination for soft fruits. This practice can boost yields by 30% and enhance fruit size by ten percent, significantly reducing the occurrence of misshapen fruit.

Our premium Pollination service caters to growers in the South East of England. We provide meticulously prepared honey bee colonies in suitable condition, timed precisely for optimal pollination efficiency. 

Operational Process:

  1. The grower places an order with Bee Conservation.
  2. A contractual agreement is established between Bee Conservation and the grower.
  3. Bee Conservation handles the delivery, placement, management, and eventual removal of honey bee colonies.
  4. Ensured Strength of Honey Bee Colonies
  5. Honey bee stocks adhere to quality standards outlined by the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Additional Information:

Farmers and tree growers play an indispensable role in fostering well-being and environmental health. Their contributions span food production and the shaping of vast landscapes.

We collaborate with farmers to enhance the environment and secure the quality of life for future generations.

Pollination serves as a pivotal ecosystem service, crucial for sustaining both wild plant communities and agricultural productivity. Insect pollination, primarily facilitated by bees, proves essential for 84% of European crops and 75% of globally consumed human food crops. In 2005, the economic value of insect pollination reached roughly £120 billion worldwide and approximately £440 million in the UK. The continuity of crop pollination hinges on the status of both domesticated and wild pollinators, susceptible to a range of environmental shifts with uncertain outcomes. 

Efforts to maintain reliable pollination services for food production under the persistent threat of declining UK pollinator populations, stemming from shifts in agricultural practices and climate changes, are imperative. By identifying sustainable pollination methods, we contribute to food security, eco-friendly farming, consumer choice for locally grown produce, and the nation's prosperity. Beneficiaries include farmers and fruit growers, as safeguarding crops against potential pollination deficits ensures the uninterrupted production of field and fruit crops dependent on insect pollination.