Rolls-Royce Motor Cars (www.rolls-roycemotorcars.com
) will join conservationists, naturalists, growers and apiculturists around the world in observing World Bee Day today (20 May).
It aims to strengthen measures to protect bees, which are vital pollinators for almost 90% of the world’s wild flowering plant species and more than 75% of global food crops. Despite their importance in supporting food security and biodiversity, bees are under significant threat world-wide from intensive and monocultural farming practices, land-use change and habitat loss, pesticides and rising temperatures linked to climate change.
In 2017, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars established an Apiary at the Home of Rolls-Royce in Goodwood, home to around 250,000 English Honey Bees. They reside reside in six traditional English-crafted wooden beehives.
As well as foraging on the 42-acre Rolls-Royce site, with its half-a-million trees, shrubs and wildflowers, together with eight acres of sedum plants growing on the factory’s ‘living roof’, the bees roam over the surrounding 12,000-acre Goodwood Estate, at the heart of the South Downs National Park in West Sussex. Each year, ‘The Rolls-Royce of Honey’ is meticulously hand‑processed by local specialists and served to guests of the marque, including customers commissioning their motor cars in the company’s Atelier suite.
The United Nations designated 20 May as World Bee Day to mark the birthday of Slovenian artist, designer and apiculturist Anton Janša (1734-1773). Considered the father of modern beekeeping, Janša pioneered many methods still in use today.
In his book A Full Guide to Beekeeping
, published posthumously in 1775, he declared: “Among all God's beings there are none so hard working and useful to man with so little attention needed for its keep as the bee.”
Richard Carter, director of global communications at Rolls-Royce Motor Cars, said: “As enthusiastic beekeepers ourselves, we are looking forward to supporting World Bee Day, and helping to raise awareness of the real, present threats facing this fascinating and incredibly important species. We all depend on bees and other pollinators to produce much of our food, and safeguard and enhance the biodiversity of the world around us.
“The Apiary is a project dear to the hearts of everyone at Rolls-Royce. World Bee Day is a reminder that as well as helping to conserve the UK’s bee population and benefiting our local farmers, growers and wildlife, we are part of something much bigger and of fundamental importance.”