Sustainable Pollination Services for UK Crops



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Project overview

Crop pollination is a vital ecosystem service and essential for maintaining agricultural and horticultural productivity. Insects help pollinate 84% of crop species in Europe, including most fruits, many vegetable and some biofuel crops. This service is worth at least £430 million each year in the UK. This pollination service is provided by wild pollinators such as bumblebees, solitary bees, hoverflies and butterflies and managed bee species including the honey bee. Current evidence, however, shows that many wild and managed pollinators are in widespread decline and this could have serious implications for the productivity of insect pollinated crops and food security in the UK.


The Sustainable Pollination Services for UK Crops project will determine which wild and managed pollinators contribute to the pollination of some important UK crops and whether at present a lack of insect pollinators is limiting agricultural productively. How land use and climate change will affect UK crop pollination in the future will also be investigated. In addition, the effectiveness of different mitigation strategies will be tested, to address crop pollination deficits on a landscape scale.

The results will pave the way towards sustainable crop pollination by providing knowledge that can be applied to crop, landscape and pollinator management practices in the UK.



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