Over 50 businesses and organisations, including The Body Shop, Yeo Valley, the British Beauty Council and Greenpeace, have come together to support an open letter written by Neal’s Yard Remedies calling on the government to implement a total ban on the use of neonicotinoids in the UK.
In the letter to the Prime Minister, the signatories ask for there to be no more derogations for pesticides following the decision by Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, George Eustice, to lift the ban on Cruiser SB (thiamethoxam) to control virus-spreading aphids in the case of the sugar beet crop as a temporary emergency measure.
The letter explains that the UK ban on neonicotinoids was instated after an EU ban in 2013 based on a “weight of scientific evidence” showing the destructive impact they have on bees and other pollinators, as well as rivers and the environment”. It goes on to say that lifting the ban “goes directly against guidance from government experts advisors” and that granting their use “works directly against the Government’s own legal requirement to halt species loss by 2030, as set out in the Environment Act in 2021”.
Anabel Kindersley, Co-Owner of Neal’s Yard Remedies along with Jayn Sterland, Chair of the Sustainable Beauty Coalition and MD at Weleda UK, Millie Kendall OBE, Chief Executive Officer of the British Beauty Council, and Lucy Siegle, Environmental Writer and Broadcaster are set to hand-deliver the letter to Downing Street today.
To put the issue into context, one teaspoon of neonicotinoid is enough to kill 1.25 billion bees.
“Standing united on this matter is more than just a coming together of like-minded businesses. It’s a call to arms for every person, company and organisation to spread the word and spur action. We hope that together, our voices will amplify the call on the government and drive positive, meaningful change.”
But it doesn’t stop there! On 21 June, Anabel is hosting a Bee Symposium in London with a powerhouse panel of environmental experts to address the issue of neonicotinoid pesticides and explore ways of working with nature to protect the UK’s bee population.
You too can do your part to help support the bees by signing the following petitions currently run by Greenpeace and our good friends at Friends of the Earth:
Friends of the Earth: Shape the future of our countryside | Friends of the Earth