Director: Peter Nelson
Runtime: 92 minutes
Much of the food on our tables comes from the intrinsic act of pollinating the flowers that become the fruits, vegetables and nuts we eat, but agricultural practices, pesticides and politics are making that simple act of nature more difficult everyday.
Honey bees pollinate one third of the food we eat, yet alarmingly honey bee populations in this country have fallen by half since the 1940’s and continue to decline. Honey bees are threatened by indiscriminate pesticide use, disease, industrial scale monoculture farming and powerful corporate lobbying interests that work to influence the EPA and USDA, who are our gatekeepers for a safe agricultural system. Our very food system is under threat and rests on the wings of these tiny insects and the commercial beekeepers that move them from farm to orchard pollinating crops that native pollinators can no longer adequately accomplish.
This film will follow migratory beekeepers and their bees throughout a growing season, joining them as they stop to pollinate the myriad plants and trees that depend upon honey bees to grow and produce our food. Much of the work moving bees is done at night when the bees are in their hives so few people actually get to see what these beekeepers do. Throughout the journey we will meet farmers, scientists, chefs and academics to give perspective to this complex food system that we all depend on. We will explain the problems of modern large scale agriculture, offer ideas on how it can be improved and learn about these pollinators that are a subculture of agriculture and a vital cornerstone of our entire food system. It’s a cinematic road trip that will result in a feature length documentary film about the importance of pollination to our food system, the complex interrelationship between migratory beekeepers, their bees and the agriculture system that needs these migratory honey bees in order to grow the food we eat.