Justin Russell & Ashley Ralph own Prime Bees apiary in College Station, Texas. Ashley and her husband Justin own Prime Bees apiary in College Station, Texas. They offer educational services as well as pollination, raw honey, agricultural leases, and bee sales. Ashley owns a real estate brokerage in Bryan / College Station and enjoys the change in pace that beekeeping brings. Justin & Ashley are in the Master Beekeeping Program and are an active members of the Brazos Valley Beekeepers Association where Justin is currently President.
Raw Honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, and Vietnam Injures U.S. Industry, Says USITC
May 11, 2022
News Release 22-058
Inv. No. 731-TA-1560-1562 and 731-TA-1564 (Final)
Contact: Jennifer Andberg, 202-205-1819
Raw Honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, and Vietnam Injures U.S. Industry, Says USITC
The United States International Trade Commission (USITC) today determined that a U.S. industry is materially injured by reason of imports of raw honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, and Vietnam that the U.S. Department of Commerce (Commerce) has determined are sold in the United States at less than fair value.
Chair Jason E. Kearns, Vice Chair Randolph J. Stayin, and Commissioners David S. Johanson, Rhonda K. Schmidtlein, and Amy A. Karpel voted in the affirmative.
As a result of the Commission’s affirmative determinations, Commerce will issue antidumping duty orders on imports of this product from Argentina, Brazil, India, and Vietnam.
The Commission made a negative critical circumstances finding with regard to imports of this product from Argentina. The Commission made an affirmative critical circumstances finding with regard to imports of this product from Vietnam.
The Commission’s public report Raw Honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, and Vietnam (Inv. Nos. 731-TA-1560-1562 and 731-TA-1564 (Final), USITC Publication 5327, May 2022) will contain the views of the Commission and information developed during the investigations.
UNITED STATES INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION
Washington, DC 20436
Raw Honey from Argentina, Brazil, India, and Vietnam
Investigation Nos.: 731-TA-1560-1562, 1564 (Final)
Product Description: Honey is a sweet, viscous fluid produced from the nectar of plants and flowers which is collected by honeybees, transformed, and combined with substances of their own, and stored and left in honeycombs to mature and ripen. Raw honey is honey as it exists in the beehive or as obtained by extraction, settling and skimming, or straining.
Status of Proceedings:
Type of investigation: Final antidumping duty investigations.
Petitioners: American Honey Producers Association (“AHPA“), Bruce, South Dakota; and Sioux Honey Association (“SHA”), Sioux City, Iowa.
USITC Institution Date: Wednesday, April 21, 2021.
USITC Hearing Date: Tuesday, April 12, 2022.
USITC Vote Date: Wednesday, May 11, 2022.
USITC Notification to Commerce Date: Tuesday, May 31, 2022.
U.S. Industry in 2020:
Number of U.S. producers: approximately 30,000 to 60,000.
Location of producers’ plants: North Dakota, South Dakota, California, Texas, Montana, Florida, Minnesota, and Michigan
Production and related workers: 1,360.
U.S. producers’ U.S. shipments: $302 million.
Apparent U.S. consumption: $690 million.
Ratio of subject imports to apparent U.S. consumption: 42.8 percent.
U.S. Imports in 2020:
Subject imports: $296 million.
Nonsubject imports: $93 million.
Leading import sources: Argentina, Brazil, India, Vietnam.
The decision will be transmitted to the Commerce Department, which will issue antidumping duty orders shortly. In addition, the Commission reached an affirmative critical circumstances determination against Vietnam. This means that U.S. Customs will collect antidumping duties on entries going back an additional 90 days prior to the preliminary antidumping duty determination—from August 28, 2020, forward. This is an important additional finding, and one that the Commission rarely makes.
These results should continue to ensure that the American honey producer gets the fair prices they deserve.
We truly appreciate all of the donations that we have received to cover legal fees.
The good fight isn’t over yet, however, and we still need your support.
To donate to the Antidumping Fund, please contact
Cassie Cox: firstname.lastname@example.org
Researchers from Lund University in Sweden have discovered that when bees consume the pesticide clothianidin on rapeseed flowers, they move more slowly than non-exposed bees. The experts also found that strawberries pollinated by the affected bees are smaller.
“We studied bees that ingested clothianidin, a pesticide that was previously used in rapeseed to control flea beetles. Our study indicates that the substance made the bees slower and impaired their ability to pollinate the strawberry flowers,” explained study lead author Lina Herbertsson.
The researchers conducted an experiment using 12 outdoor cages containing the bees and rapeseed plants. Half the cages had rapeseed plants treated with clothianidin, and the other half were not treated with the pesticide.
The bees in the treated containers took more time to visit the same number of rapeseed flowers as the non-exposed bees. When they weighed the strawberries pollinated by the bees, researchers determined the strawberries pollinated by the exposed bees weighed less.
“Previous studies have shown that clothianidin affects wild bees negatively in terms of foraging speed, development and reproduction. Our results indicate that it can also impair the bees’ ability to pollinate strawberry flowers,” said Herbertsson.
Although the study is significant, the authors are careful not to jump to conclusions. “In our study, we did not identify the cause for the lower strawberry weight, and after only having performed a single study under rather special circumstances, we also don’t know if this is a general pattern,” explained Herbertsson.
“Although clothianidin is now banned, other substances that affect the nervous system of insects in a similar way have partly replaced it. It is therefore of the utmost importance to continue this research and investigate how these substances affect bee behavior and pollination.”
This study can be found in the journal PLoS ONE.
NSW keepers must kill bees to get payments
Sun, 4 September 2022 7:34PM
Compensation to support NSW beekeepers through a deadly parasite outbreak will not be issued until the affected bees have been euthanised.
The varroa mite that attacks and feeds on honey bees was detected near Newcastle in June, prompting the creation of emergency eradication and surveillance zones.
As the government worked to trace and remove the parasite, some 97 infected premises were detected around the Hunter, Narrabri and Coffs Harbour areas by mid August.
Bees are vital to pollination, with billions of dollars worth of crops threatened if it doesn’t occur.
Honey bee colonies within eradication zones have to be euthanised and this must be reported to the Department of Primary Industries. The hives must also be inspected and managed by officials.
An $18 million federal-state government support package was announced in July and NSW Agriculture Minister Dugald Saunders says keepers are now being compensated for their bees, hives, frames and other materials that had to be destroyed.
“You’re not getting paid before your bees have been euthanised but as that happens the compensation is available very quickly,” he told a budget estimates hearing on Monday.
“I understand it’s difficult if you’re looking at income and you haven’t had any income.”
The amount of compensation was negotiated by the federal government after consulting with the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council, Mr Saunders said.
Additional support is in place for commercial beekeepers including compensation for fuel, income and honey production.
Recreational keepers who euthanised their hives are also eligible for up to $550 in compensation per hive or $200 if they retain the hive, only killing the bees.
Mr Saunders says his office is confident most recreational keepers in the emergency zones have been identified, after a few hundred people a day helped locate hives during the outbreak.
Recreational keepers had come on board to register their hives for the industry’s future sustainability, he said.
Last month NSW eased restrictions on some beekeepers, with those outside the emergency notification zones allowed to move bees and hives more freely.
To combat its own varroa incursion, Victoria introduced a statewide permit system for anyone bringing bee or bee products across its border last month, which will not be granted to people from NSW.
Honey Industry Votes to Continue the Research and Promotion Program
Date September 08, 2022
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) today announced that U.S. honey first handlers and importers have approved continuing the National Honey Board research and promotion program.
In the referendum, 73.8% of first handlers and importers voting, who represented 85.5% of the volume of honey or honey products voting in the referendum, were in favor of continuing the program. Over 50% of the first handlers and importers voting and over 50% of the volume voting in the referendum were required for the program to continue.
To be eligible to participate in the referendum, first handlers and importers had to handle or import at least 250,000 pounds of honey or honey products during the representative period of Jan. 1 through Dec. 31, 2021, and be subject to assessments under the program.
The Honey Packers and Importers Research, Promotion, Consumer Education and Industry Information Order, which has been administered by the National Honey Board since 2008, requires USDA to conduct a referendum every seven years to determine whether the industry is in favor of continuing the program. For the program to continue, first handlers and importers had to approve the program by a majority of handlers and importers voting in the referendum, who also represent a majority of the volume represented in the referendum.
The honey research and promotion program is authorized under the Commodity Promotion, Research and Information Act of 1996. The program was developed to administer an effective and coordinated program of generic promotion, consumer information and related research designed to drive consumption of honey and honey products in the U.S.
Since 1966, Congress has authorized the development of industry-funded research and promotion boards to provide a framework for agricultural industries to pool their resources and combine efforts to develop new markets, strengthen existing markets and conduct important research and promotion activities. The Agricultural Marketing Service provides oversight of 22 boards, paid for by industry assessments, which helps ensure fiscal accountability and program integrity.
USDA Honey Outlook Report: U.S. Demand for Honey Hits All-Time High
The USDA has published its annual Honey Outlook Report, and the news is overwhelmingly positive. The United States is the second largest honey consumer behind China, according to the latest data available from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization in 2019. And in 2021, consumption reached a new record high of 618 million pounds, up 8 percent from the previous year.
The previous record was 596 million pounds in 2017. Between 1991 and 2021, the average rate of growth has been 10.7 million pounds per year. This translates to about 1.9 pounds per capita of honey consumption in 2021 compared with 1.2 pounds per capita in the early 1990s. The growth in demand, in part due to the growing population, has also been attributed to consumers’ association of honey as a “superfood”—along with garlic, ginger and turmeric—and perception of honey being a healthy sweetener.
According to the Honey Outlook Report, the national average price paid to honey producers in 2021 was $2.54 per pound, up from last year’s $2.10. This is now the highest price, surpassing 2018’s record-high price of $2.21. Prices in 2021 were higher than 2020 by 23 to 28 percent in the top 3 producing states and by 8 percent in the rest of the states. Read the full report here.
Shared by request as a resource for our membership. The original article can be found – https://www.consumernotice.org/environmental/pesticides/roundup/alternatives/
Roundup alternatives without glyphosate are available and can be effective. Organic brand options use naturally occurring oils or acids, and some alternatives can even be made with household ingredients. Farmers may find it easier to use different herbicides or farming methods.
Interest in alternatives to Roundup has grown quickly since concerns emerged over the herbicide’s safety. Its active ingredient, glyphosate, is branded as a probable cause of cancer by the United Nation’s International Agency for Research on Cancer. But regulators in the United States have said glyphosate does not pose a risk to people’s health or the environment.
At the same time, more than 13,000 Roundup lawsuits claiming the pesticide caused non-Hodgkin lymphoma or other cancers have been filed in courts around the United States.
Everyday consumers may be in a better position than farmers to adopt alternatives to Roundup. Large farms or landscaping operations may have a harder — and more expensive — time giving up glyphosate-based herbicides.
There are several glyphosate alternatives for controlling weeds around your house. You may need to consider different options for different parts of your yard or garden. Not all options may work in all cases.
Putting down a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch will cut off the sunlight weeds need to sprout. Any weeds that manage to germinate will suffocate under the weight of the mulch.
A handful of iron-based weed killers have been approved by the Environmental Protection Agency. Broadleaf weeds absorb iron more easily and in higher amounts than the grass in your lawn. As the iron oxidizes, it kills weeds within just hours after applying it.
Manually digging up weeds by the root may be the most effective way to get rid of them. It is also the most labor intensive.
Organic Alternatives to Roundup
Several brands of organic herbicides are available in the United States. They tend to use naturally occurring oils or acids to kill weeds. These products typically work on weeds after they’ve sprouted. However, they are not usually effective against perennial weeds.
Organic Roundup alternatives include herbicidal soaps that use fatty acids to kill weeds and industrial vinegar, which contains much higher levels of acetic acid than what you have in your kitchen. Acid-based herbicides burn down some young weeds.
Corn gluten meal can kill grass weeds and broadleaf weeds. To use it, spread 20 pounds for every 1,000 square feet of garden. Wait five days to water the area if it hasn’t rained. It should kill weeds for up to six weeks.
Organic herbicides are most effective when weeds are still small and less effective as weeds get older, according to a study by the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources.
The study found that the organic weed killers were 60 percent to 100 percent effective if used in high volume against certain weeds before they were 12 days old. But they were less than 40 percent effective if used on broadleaf weeds after 26 days.
They were also expensive for large scale use, costing $400 to $600 an acre in 2010, which was more costly than pulling weeds by hand.
Home Recipe for a Roundup Alternative
If you’re worried about Roundup and cancer risks, you can cook up an alternative using easy-to-find household ingredients. The internet is full of formulas you can make at home, but you should be careful. Even seemingly safer or organic mixtures can kill plants you want to protect, damage your soil or cause you harm.
Researchers at North Dakota State University tested a popular vinegar, salt and soap homemade herbicide formula in 2014. They found it was effective at killing small annual weeds. It didn’t work very well on large annual weeds or perennials. Annuals are plants that only live a year. Perennials are those that live two years or more, coming back each year.
The researchers found glyphosate was cheaper, but the homemade mix, using store brand ingredients, was still less than $3 a gallon. That made it practical for home use against certain weeds.
The mixture can still be toxic to humans and animals if swallowed. Based on animal tests, the researchers estimated that a gallon of the salt and vinegar concoction was nearly 10 times more toxic than the store brand glyphosate they tested it against. So it should be stored away from children and pets.
So the vinegar you are using to spray your weeds is probably made from corn that was sprayed with glyphosate: the very herbicide you were trying to avoid.
You should also be aware that vinegar may contain glyphosate. That’s because most vinegar is made with corn and most corn in the United States is grown from Roundup Ready seed. Those are crops genetically modified so farmers can continue using Roundup as the crop matures.
“So the vinegar you are using to spray your weeds is probably made from corn that was sprayed with glyphosate: the very herbicide you were trying to avoid,” the researchers wrote.
You might get around this problem by using certified organic vinegar.
Farming Techniques, Other Herbicides and Robots as Alternatives
Long before people started worrying about potential health risks with glyphosate, farmers were already looking for Roundup alternatives.
The first Roundup-resistant weeds cropped up in a Delaware soybean field in 2000 and have been a growing problem ever since. By 2014, at least 24 species of weeds had developed a resistance to glyphosate.
A study in 2008 in the journal Pest Management Science called glyphosate “a once-in-a-century herbicide.” Despite the rise of Roundup resistant weeds, it’s been difficult for researchers to find anything that works as well as glyphosate at controlling weeds.
But Bayer AG, the drug and chemical giant that makes Roundup, promised in June 2019 to spend $5.6 billion over the next 10 years on herbicide research.
One alternative may be biopesticides, a staple of organic farming. They’re made of naturally occurring substances found in plants, animals, minerals, fungi and bacteria. The Environmental Protection Agency reported more than 18 million acres were being treated with biopesticides in 2015.
Some farmers have switched to an older pesticide called dicamba. It can be sprayed on crops that have been genetically modified to be resistant to it while killing the weeds around them. But it’s been blamed for drifting and destroying 3.6 million acres of unprotected crops in 2017 alone.
Alternative Farming Techniques
Crop rotation — changing the crops grown in a field from season-to-season or year-to-year — can break up weeds’ growth and reproductive cycles. Growing cover crops that protect and enrich the soil during the rotation also helps.
Physical weed control uses brute force against weeds. Mechanical weeders pulled behind tractors can rip weeds out between rows. Thermal weeding uses flames, steam or hot water sprayed onto weeds to kill them with heat.
New agriculture robots may soon take over mechanical weeding chores or reduce the amount of pesticides sprayed on crops.
French company Naio Technologies has been testing its Dino weeding robot in the Unites States. Its operator types in instructions, such as field and crop row dimensions, on the four-wheeled robot’s controls. It then uses GPS and cameras to move through the field using cultivator blades to rip up weeds.
The company says the electric robot can cover 12 acres in eight hours on its own. And it could potentially cut labor costs. The New Food Economy, a nonprofit news organization, quoted a farm production engineer as saying one person could manage a fleet of 10 such robots, eliminating the need for 10 people to man a tractor each.
We see these herbicides eventually being used commercially with camera-based precision applicators that ‘see’ weeds and deliver herbicides only to the weeds, not to the crop or bare ground.
Coupling robots with organic herbicides could be an economically and environmentally friendly combination.
“We see these herbicides eventually being used commercially with camera-based precision applicators that ‘see’ weeds and deliver herbicides only to the weeds, not to the crop or bare ground,” W. Thomas Lanini of the University of California wrote in a report on research into organic herbicides.
The solar-powered ecoRobotix does just that using artificial intelligence and cameras to navigate and to identify weeds as it passes over. Two robotic arms spray pesticide precisely on weeds. And it uses 20 times less herbicide than conventional sprayers.
Why Is Roundup Still So Widely Used?
Roundup became the first glyphosate-based herbicide when it hit the market in the 1970s. Today, glyphosate is the most widely used weed killer in the world. Much of its appeal is that it is cheap and effective, according to researchers at North Carolina State University.
In a 2018 Extension Service publication, weed scientists Joel Neal and Andrew Senesac wrote that glyphosate has several advantages over other weed-killing options. It kills a wide variety of weeds, doesn’t get into the soil and kill other plants, and it’s less expensive than other herbicides.
In general, the results suggested that, compared to conventional herbicides, the alternative methods chosen for research were less effective and more costly,” researchers wrote in their report.
The scientists said there are effective alternatives to glyphosate, but each tends to have a drawback. They wrote that alternatives “will be, in some way, less effective, less convenient, and/or more expensive.”
State transportation departments have looked at alternatives for controlling weeds along thousands of miles of highway right of way. A 2008 report for Massachusetts’ transportation department found the same problems the North Carolina State researchers found.
“In general, the results suggested that, compared to conventional herbicides, the alternative methods chosen for research were less effective and more costly,” researchers wrote in their report.
Please seek the advice of a qualified professional before making decisions about your health or finances.
Last Modified: July 6, 2021
Terry TurnerSenior WriterTerry Turner has been writing articles and producing news broadcasts for more than 30 years. An Emmy-winning journalist, he has reported on consumer policy issues before Congress, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Food and Drug Administration and other federal agencies.
ARTICLE VIII the bylaws states that the “bylaws may be amended or repealed, in whole or in part, by a majority vote at any organized meeting of the Association preceded by a thirty (30) day advance written notice to the membership of such proposed change. This will be done by means of publication in the TBA Journal in a timely issue, and/or sent to the members last recorded preferred contact address preceding such meeting.” The bylaws are posted on the TBA website.
The membership will be asked to consider and approve the following change to Article II Section 2 of the current bylaws at the 2022 Annual Meeting regarding the members of the Nominations Committee: “The Nominations Committee will consist of but not be limited to, the Immediate Past President, two “Directors at Large” shall be changed to “Executive Committee members serving currently or who have served in the previous five years” selected by the Executive Committee, and two members from the general membership.”
Having representation on the Nominations Committee from both the general membership and those who have had the experience of serving on the Executive Committee brings a well-rounded perspective to the Nominations Committee. This change is recommended to broaden the pool of potential Nominations Committee members selected from the Executive Committee because Directors At Large selected to the Nominations Committee who want to be considered for nomination to other positions must recuse themselves from the process of interviewing nominees for those positions. If the pool of potential members is broadened slightly, the Nominations Committee can function with less of these conflicts arising.
NAPPC Pollinator Electric Power Award This award is co-presented and sponsored by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).
This initiative of the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC) recognizes electric power projects who are leading the field in pollinator‐friendly initiatives. This award was developed by the NAPPC Pollinators on Managed Lands Task Force in conjunction with the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). As a sponsor of the program, EPRI will not be represented on the award selection committee.
This award adds to existing NAPPC award categories, including Pollinator Advocates, Pollinator Conservation Farmer-Ranchers, and Pollinator Roadside Managers. Learn more about other award categories here.
Pollinator Electric Power Projects including, but not limited to utility rights-of-way, generation facilities (solar, wind, hydro, etc), substations, and surplus property are eligible for this award.
What you get:
Peer and stakeholder recognition
Award plaque presented ceremony and acceptance speech at NAPPC 2022
Template for a press release (that the company can customize)
An award badge for you to use on website/email/social media
NAPPC registration for up to 2 representatives
This award is for a SPECIFIC PROJECT. It is not for a company/agency as a whole. Please do not submit nomination forms for a collective set of efforts of an organization, as they will not be considered.
This NAPPC award is a notable award given only to highly deserving projects. If no deserving projects are nominated, NAPPC may choose to not provide any awards in this category.
NAPPC may request the top-ranking nominations to present to the selection committee.
Award Criteria – The following are the 4 primary considerations for the reviewers:
Commitment to the pollinator project, including long-term maintenance plans.
Vegetation management practices, including plant selection and site management.
Education & Engagement, including use of signage and public outreach.
Monitoring and measured benefit to pollinators.
Nomination Period: March 2022 – July 15, 2022
Deadline for Applications: July 15, 2022
Award Announced: Fall 2022
To nominate a project for the NAPPC Pollinator Electric Power Award, please complete the online nomination form below and submit your nomination by July 15th, 2022. Self-nominations are accepted.
The Texas Beekeepers Association Legislative Committee was invited to attend the Texas Farm Bureau’s “Legislative Ag Day” and sent TBA President – Ashley Ralph, Vice President – Dodie Stillman, and Past President – Chris Moore to speak to Texas legislative staff in a casual and adventure-filled day at the Luling Foundation.
Farm Bureau put this event together with a goal of providing legislative staff with information as well as contacts in the agricultural industry throughout Texas. This event helps to create foundation of knowledge and curiosity in how agriculture and rural life affects Texas citizens. Hays, Travis and Caldwell County Farm Bureaus worked with the Luling Foundation and the Texas Ag Council to host the Legislative Ag Day on June 9.
“Because of the growing urban population in Texas, most of the legislators and their staff are from urban areas, and there are fewer and fewer rural representatives and senators,” Joe Morris, Travis County Farm Bureau president and our TBA lobbyist, said. “What we are trying to do is give urban legislators and staff, who otherwise have no contact with agriculture and rural life, a glimpse into what agriculture is.”
Our group was thrilled to attend this event during a warm, breezy summer day – as we spoke to the legislative staff, a herd of wild boars crossed the fields, cattle were herded into chutes, large farm machinery was lined up in the background of the 90 year old model Luling Foundation farm.
Staff members for Texas senators and representatives were able to create relationships that will aid them during the 2023 session as they write and evaluate potential legislation. The day’s activities included stations to show different aspects of farming and ranching. We had an uninterrupted opportunity to talk about the importance of bees with these enthusiastic young adults.
After an overview of the bee industry, the contribution of honey bees to agriculture as a whole as well as the U.S. and Texas economy, we were asked a number of questions by interested staffers in regards to labeling laws, ag valuation, and bee health and it was a wonderful opportunity to educate and excite about bees and beekeeping.
Check out this article By Julie Tomascik to read more: https://texasfarmbureau.org/farm-visit-grows-ag-knowledge-for-legislative-staff/
“It’s important to get out and hear from cattle producers, bee producers,” Will Rider said while speaking to Farm Bureau reps. “I think just hearing from the sources about issues that need some work is one of the most important things that I’ll take from this.” Will serves as the legislative director for Rep. Stan Lambert, noted Texas is growing increasingly urban. Lambert’s district includes Taylor, Jones and Nolan counties, covering both urban and rural areas.
The event was an opportunity to cultivate relationships with legislative aides and answer questions and concerns they might have and we’ll continue to offer expertise in issues related to bees and beekeeping.