Wheat and poppies

Farming for bees and pollinators

Farmers, bees and Friends of the Earth

We believe a sustainable approach to farming is essential for a healthy environment, healthy food – and healthy profits for farmers. For years we've worked with farmers who are developing innovative approaches to wildlife-friendly farming. A vital part of this is protecting our bees and pollinators, which we rely on for so many of our food crops. Read on to find out how we're working with farmers.

What is bee-friendly farming?

By providing food and shelter for bees, and reducing pesticide use, farmers can help bees and other pollinators thrive on their farms.

Discover some of the tried and tested ways that farmers can help – and the role that government can play too.

Farmers – champions for bees

Meet some of the fantastic farmers we've worked with, who are leading the way in low-input farming and reducing pesticide use.

As well as reducing the use of pesticides, they're demonstrating how creating wildlife-friendly habitats has a beneficial effect on their crops and farms.

Pollinators and pesticides – the facts

In April 2018 countries across the EU, including the UK, voted in favour of a ban on bee-harming neonicotinoid pesticides on all outdoor crops.

This was a great success and a huge step in the right direction but there is still plenty to be done. There's growing evidence of widespread wildlife decline, and concern about the cumulative impact of industrial scale pesticide use. We need to ensure the government's new policy for farming after Brexit includes a clear plan to reduce overall pesticide use and make the countryside a safer place for wildlife.

Farming without pesticides

A growing number of UK farmers have not only stopped using neonicotinoids but also cut other pesticide use.

Peter Lundgren, a conventional farmer in Lincolnshire, says: "For the last 8 years I've farmed without neonicotinoids and I haven't seen any loss in yield; in fact it's actually saved money. We can manage our pesticide problems with a combination of the pesticides we've got available and sympathetic farming."

Find out more why farmers are rejecting pesticides, and innovating with more sustainable ways to control pests.