Report by the Economic Research Service, Research Education and Economics (REE), March 2018
Since 2006, annual winter losses of managed honey bee colonies have averaged 28.7 percent, approximately double the historical winter mortality rate of 15.0 percent. These elevated losses have raised concerns that agricultural and food supply chains will suffer disruptions as pollination services become more costly and less available. This study rovides an overview of the pollination services market and the mechanisms by which beekeepers, farmers, and retail food producers adjust to increasing scarcity in the pollination services market. It also examines the empirical data on pollinated crop production, pollination service fees, and annual numbers of honey bee colonies.