THE HÄAGEN-DAZS® BRAND REDOUBLES EFFORTS TO HELP THE HONEY BEES
Three years later, scientists still stumped over what’s mysteriously killing off entire hives
Oakland, Calif. (February 26, 2009) ─ Over the last three winters, more than one in three honey bee colonies in the U.S. have mysteriously died; a staggering phenomenon scientists have named Colony Collapse Disorder, or CCD. And for the second year, the Häagen-Dazs brand is taking the lead in driving solutions to solve this dire puzzle threatening our food supply and stumping scientists from around the world.
Because honey bee pollination is required to produce one-third of all the natural foods we eat, honey bees play a critical role in ensuring we have enough food to feed our growing population.
Why hasn’t the cause of CCD been identified? Three basic factors are hampering research into the crisis: lack of awareness among the general public, lack of action aimed at alleviating the problem, and lack of funding to determine the root cause and address much-needed solutions.
The Häagen-Dazs brand has found that while consumer awareness of the honey bee crisis increased in the last year, largely through the brand’s education efforts, the study revealed that only a little more than half of consumers are aware of the crisis. And only one in six is aware of something specific that they can do to help the honey bees.
Funding on the scale required to seriously tackle this issue also remains elusive. The Farm Bill approved by Congress last year included a provision to fund more research, yet Congress has not yet allocated the money, putting the allocation in question. In the meantime, bees continue to die by the billions.
That’s why the Häagen-Dazs brand is stepping up for a second year and redoubling its Häagen-Dazs loves Honey Bees® campaign efforts. Elements of the campaign include:
- A second donation to UC Davis and Penn State Universities of $250,000. This brings the brand’s total donation for honey bee research to a half million dollars over two years.
- Continuation of the Häagen-Dazs brand’s public education efforts with:
- A special flavor, Vanilla Honey Bee, and all “bee-built” flavors (flavors that use at least one honey bee-pollinated ingredient) of ice cream, sorbet, frozen yogurt and bars proudly carry a HD loves HB® symbol and message under the lid.
- A full-scale awareness effort, coupled with unique print and online advertising.
- Part of the brand’s donation to UC Davis is being used to create a Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven – a one-half acre bee-friendly demonstration garden coordinated by the California Center for Urban Horticulture. Visitors to the garden will be able to glean ideas on how to establish their own bee-friendly gardens and help to improve the nutrition of bees in their own backyards.
- An upgraded interactive website (www.helpthehoneybees.com) premiering in April with a focus on examples of how consumers have gotten involved in helping to save the hardworking honey bees.
“Thousands of people reached out to join in our efforts to save honey bees over the course of the year. We’re making a difference but there is still much to be done,” said Ching-Yee Hu, Häagen-Dazs brand manager. “We are so proud to continue our support. This is a problem bigger than simply protecting our source of all-natural ingredients, like the almonds in our Vanilla Swiss Almond flavor. This issue affects our ability to provide food for our tables.”
The brand encourages everyone to find a way to become a bee crusader in 2009. Do your part to help save the honey bees. Here’s how you can make a difference:
- Create a bee friendly garden with plants that attract honey bees. Select a plant with a long growing season or a group of plants that together will offer flowers from spring through fall. A great resource for information can be found at www.helpthehoneybees.com, or from the horticulturalist at your local plant nursery.
- Avoid insecticides in your garden. Instead, promote good bugs (called ‘beneficial insects’) in your garden – bugs that will happily eat the bad bugs chomping on your plants. A comprehensive resource for information is www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/ and http://horticulture.psu.edu/extension/mg
- Every time you buy a Häagen-Dazs ice cream bee-built product, a portion of the proceeds of the sale go toward helping the honey bees.
- Tell a friend - The honey bee disappearance is already having an effect on the world’s most beloved foods. However, many people have yet to learn about this issue and how they can help. Visit www.helpthehoneybees.com to send a Bee-Mail or to create your own animated honey bee to help spread the word.
- Visit the Häagen-Dazs Bee Store at www.helpthehoneybees.com - All proceeds from our bee store will fund CCD and sustainable pollination research at Penn State and UC Davis.
For full details on how the Häagen-Dazs brand is helping honey bees and how you can take part, please visit www.helpthehoneybees.com.
Crafted in 1961 by Reuben Mattus in his family’s dairy, Häagen-Dazs is the original superpremium ice cream. True to tradition, we are committed to using only the purest ingredients in crafting the world’s finest ice cream. Truly made like no other, today Häagen-Dazs ice cream offers a full range of products from ice cream to sorbet, frozen yogurt and frozen snacks in more than 65 flavors. Häagen-Dazs products are available around the globe for ice cream lovers to enjoy. For more information, please visit www.Häagen-Dazs.com.
According to a recent survey conducted by Opinion Research Corporation on behalf of the Häagen-Dazs Brand