As part of its ongoing efforts to counteract the potentially devestating effects of the dwindling bee population on the food system, Danone Canada’s Silk brand has partnered with Pollinator Partnership Canada to create an urban flower route in Montreal called the “Silk Bee Line.” The route is opening on May 20th, which is World Bee Day.
Pollinator Partnership Canada is a charity dedicated to the protection and promotion of pollinators (birds, bees, butterflies, etc.) and their ecosystems through a combination of conservation, education, and research.
The work builds on the plant-based milk brand’s ongoing Silk Bee Hotel billboard program, a partnership with the University of Montreal that sees it install “bee hotels” on a series of billboards in the city. The “hotels” enable pollinators to rest and reproduce, while allowing researchers to study native bee populations and pollination.
Open to the public, the Silk Bee Line is situated along the Place de Castelnau, a commercial street in the city’s Villeray neighbourhood, with participating businesses also putting plants in place to guide pollinators.
Visitors to the Bee Line will able to able to pick up bee-friendly seeds to help pollinator populations in urban areas. The Bee Line also features a pollinator-inspired mural created by Canadian artists Marc-Olivier Lamothe and Cath Laporte.
“Part of our mission is to support health through food, and this initiative is a way to show our commitment to regenerative agriculture practices and using our scale for good,” said Danone Canada marketing director Fiona O’Brien, in a press release. “Silk is dedicated to supporting our pollinators and we want to encourage Canadians to also do their part.”
According to Pollinator Partnership Canada, pollinators provide pollination to more than 180,000 different plant species and more than 1,200 crops, meaning they’re responsible for one out of every three bites of food we take.
A deadly combination of climate change, pesticides and pollution are decimating the honey bee population that contribute to as much as $395 million in agricultural productivity alone. In addition to food, they also support ecosystems that clean the air, stabilize soils, protect from severe weather, and support other wildlife.