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Thread: Farming Today

  1. #11

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    I understand your concern mbc but at the end of the day there are lots deserving cases for subsidy
    Not sure there's a strong case for bee farming
    perhaps a poll with more options ?

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Drone Ranger View Post
    I understand your concern mbc but at the end of the day there are lots deserving cases for subsidy
    Not sure there's a strong case for bee farming
    perhaps a poll with more options ?
    Who could be more deserving than bee farmers ?
    All the not so hidden benefits of having robust pollinator populations make bee farming the most deserving of all occupations to subsidise IMHO.

  3. #13

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    "Robust"?! Didn't you hear about bee farmers being practically wiped out last winter in Scotland MBC? Maybe in Wales it's some sort of commercial beekeeper paradise but up here not so much. And "most deserving"? - in the words of that great tennis player -"You ca-NNOT be serious!" One example of more deserving than your bee importing, foreign bee producer-supporting bee farmer - the upland or remote crofter/farmer. Keeping them going stops our country being a depopulated, unproductive wilderness. We live in very different countries MBC as may be pointed out to you by rather a lot of us in September 2014.

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by mbc View Post
    Who could be more deserving than bee farmers ?
    All the not so hidden benefits of having robust pollinator populations make bee farming the most deserving of all occupations to subsidise IMHO.
    Hi mbc
    One thing about subsidy is that it is given to the existing operators and would not encourage new entrants just shut them out
    I'm not convinced by the pollination argument because as I have said before the commercial bees spend most of their time collecting honey.
    Oil seed rape is already subsidised farmers are getting that money, so if pollination service is helpful to this wind pollinated crop then perhaps they can give some to the bee farmer.
    Heather plants live for 30 years plus they don't need pollination services
    The things that do need pollinating like fruit are ignored by honeybees if there is a better nectar source around and the growers are already prepared to pay for pollination services.
    Of course in our climate the soft fruit is moving under plastic and better pollinaters like bumble bees take care of that end of things
    So that brings me to is there a case for subsidy because Beekeeping can only survive with subsidy and I think that's a no there are thousands of beekeepers in the UK
    Is beekeeping a major employer in the UK -no it's seasonal work for migrant workers mostly
    Is the product of the activity essential to our well being again no there is no case here
    The best route for a commercial beekeeping sector to become profitable is rationalisation then which means fewer and bigger operations with greater efficiency
    Sadly that brings us back to closing the door on any new entrants to professional or semi professional beekeeping
    The truth is that the British climate is not one where people can expect to make a living from a seasonal activity like beekeeping
    At some point the BFA are going to tell one porky pie too many about the demise of the honey bee and the collapse of civilisation as we know it
    In the end calling "wolf" every five minutes is counter productive as I have said before and there may be backlash
    Long Long post sorry

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Drone Ranger View Post
    The truth is that the British climate is not one where people can expect to make a living from a seasonal activity like beekeeping
    Don't know about others, but i have managed to make a living from beekeeping for a lot of years now, and employ others, and i rear my own queens... and have never received any kind of financial help, like grants or subsidy.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete L View Post
    Don't know about others, but i have managed to make a living from beekeeping for a lot of years now, and employ others, and i rear my own queens... and have never received any kind of financial help, like grants or subsidy.
    You have my great respect pete for suceeding against the odds
    I like pure bred chickens (not enough to buy many though)
    There are one or two people make a living from breeding those and selling hatching eggs etc.
    I honestly don't know how they do it.
    I think they usually have a "proper job" as well
    Contrast that with the guy who fixed my patio door -- he turned up, lifted the door out fitted two roller things, drunk tea and got 250
    No wonder I cant afford a bee suit and sadly won't be contributing to Mr Mc or anyone elses coffers without a bit of screaming

  7. #17

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    Don't get me wrong. I believe in funding! I believe that businesses/charities/individuals should get help for things which benefit the greater good and even make them some profit into the bargain. There's nothing wrong with that. And if bee farmers are doing things which society gets a benefit from then they should get help if they need it. But as far as I can see they or most of them are not. If they were to put subsidy money not into importing replacement stocks/queens but into a long term sustainable future for themselves and for Scotland's bees I'd think better of them. But no what the country really needs is an endless supply of cheap OSR honey - NOT!

  8. #18

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    Hi Drumgerry
    Is there a case for alpacca subsidy, I would be more well disposed to them because they are fluffy, put some goodness back in the ground, and reduce the environmental impact of lawn mowers.
    They are apparently excellent shepherds and don't attract as many flies as cows
    Plus Einstien also said that once the Alpacca goes we follow 5 years afterwards ...or was that bees... or neither

  9. #19

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    There's sweet fanny adams for us alpaca types I'm afraid. They are good at decreasing fox predation on lambs although personally I'd want a llama (those dudes can be scary). Sorry but you're wrong on the fly front. Great billowing clouds of the little sods hang around especially if it's a wet summer (when the only company the flies have are AMM queens and drones out mating!!).

    If the alpaca goes I think it's the three toed sloth that follows shortly afterwards - according to Einstein anyway!

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by drumgerry View Post
    "Robust"?! Didn't you hear about bee farmers being practically wiped out last winter in Scotland MBC? Maybe in Wales it's some sort of commercial beekeeper paradise but up here not so much. And "most deserving"? - in the words of that great tennis player -"You ca-NNOT be serious!" One example of more deserving than your bee importing, foreign bee producer-supporting bee farmer - the upland or remote crofter/farmer. Keeping them going stops our country being a depopulated, unproductive wilderness. We live in very different countries MBC as may be pointed out to you by rather a lot of us in September 2014.
    I try and be mindful of the fact things are a bit different up there, but surely even in Scotland, bees ( even imported bees from the 'dark side')provide invaluable pollination not just to cultivated plants but also all the wild flora, which in turn benefits everyone in supporting more fauna for grockles to come and gawp at while staying in pricey hotels.. How about subsidising crofters to keep bees ? There'd be no need for dedicated bee farmers then and it would ensure the countryside would get adequate pollination.

    I strongly support devolution, but dread your lot going your own way as it would leave the rest of us even more London-centric than at present

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