Environmental Awareness: Let’s Bee Honest
The Western Front
May 13, 2017
On Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, environmental activists and celebrities are swarming the hashtag #SavetheBees. What does #SavetheBees even mean? Every season the numbers of our pollinators are plummeting, and the risk of endangerment of honeybees becomes more and more of a reality. The destruction of the toxic chemicals in today’s agriculture and processed food system plays a huge role to bees’ endangerment. This toxic sting is why we are losing what brings life to what we eat.
In 2016, Washington state alone lost 31 percent of our bees, according to the USDA Bee Informed Partnership.
My friends call me a busy-bee, but ironically being around the buzz of the hive keeps me grounded. This is thanks to my childhood home where my mom keeps multiple urban beehives in our backyard in the heart of Seattle.
Sustainability is a major priority within my generation, not just for Western students. Naturally companies are following the marketing trends and being dishonest in the process.
This past winter Honey Nut Cheerios practiced greenwashing, a practice in which a company promotes ideologies that its business doesn’t apply to appeal to those who have intentions of being a ‘conscious consumer,’ by launching a campaign on the trend #SavetheBees. The familiar honeybee went missing from the front of the cereal box to emphasize the endangerment of our honeybee population.
The campaign included the ideology ‘“People need bees, now bees need people.” The company set out with the goal to plant a million seeds nationwide, which it has now exceeded by over a billion at this point. If you clipped the back of your cereal box, mailed in the clip into the headquarters, it would mail you flower seed packets. This created a lot of buzz throughout social media, in turn creating profit for the cereal brand. This is spreading awareness, but also invasive seeds that compete with our environments.