You can download a copy of this letter here.
The 2017 Fall Conference of the Oregon State Beekeepers Association is scheduled for October 27–29, to be held once again at the beautiful Oregon Garden in Silverton. Information about the agenda, presenters and their work, and registration is now available on the Conference website. Information is being added as updates become available.
To register online, go to Registration. For registration by mail, please download and complete the Conference Registration Form 2017 and send with a check or money order made payable to OSBA to the address listed on the form. The deadline for preregistration is October 17. Although registration will be available on site, late fees apply after October 17. Early registration does more than help participants avoid the late fees; it also helps conference planners. Please register as early as possible!
To: All Concerned Stakeholders
Date: 15 June 2017
Re: Grasshopper Suppression Program in Harney County, Oregon
I am writing to notify you of proposed activities associated with the cooperative USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) and Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) Grasshopper Suppression Program. At the request of the US Department of Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), APHIS is planning a suppression program to control grasshoppers in Harney County, Oregon. This is a rangeland treatment program to preserve forage, wildlife food and shelter, and to prevent grasshoppers from migrating onto adjacent pasture and crop fields.
The areas under consideration for treatment involve three blocks totaling approximately 30,000 acres along East Steens Mountain Road (see the attached maps). APHIS proposes using 1 ounce of diflubenzuron plus 31 ounces of water per treated acre. The proposed treatment is expected to take place between June 19 and July 14, 2017. An Environmental Assessment was prepared January 22, 2017, that analyzed the impacts of such a program on the environment. A Finding of No Significant Impact was signed January 23, 2017. Electronic versions are available on the ODA’s Plant Division web page: http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/programs/IPPM/.
If you have questions about federal grasshopper program, or would like copies of the assessment documents, please contact me at 503-820-2746, by email at email@example.com, or by mail at the address below.
State Health Plant Director, Oregon
Plant Protection and Quarantine
This letter and maps can be accessed here.
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
Plant Protection and Quarantine
6135 NE 80th Ave.
Portland, OR 97218
Federal Relay Service
The OSBA will have a booth at the Oregon State Fair this year. The fair runs from August 25 through September 4. This is a great opportunity to promote the importance of beekeeping and pollinator health to the general public, and we could use your help. Ideally, we will have members from our Oregon chapters hosting the booth each day. Signup for four-hour shifts is now available. In addition, we will have a honey show with Judge Marjorie Ehry. Consider entering your honey or other products of the hive! The theme this year is The Colors of Fun.
We will also need observation hives to display on a rotational basis. If you have construction or exhibit experience, we could use your assistance to set up our exhibit in the 10-foot by 40-foot booth on August 24, and tear down the exhibit on September 5. We need people of all levels of experience to interact with the public on fair days. And if you know the ins and outs of observation hives, you can be part of a critical role to manage that important component of the exhibit. Volunteers get a free pass to the fair for the day, free parking, and the opportunity to promote bees and beekeeping to the public.
If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Yvonne Shaw at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dear Western Beekeeper,
The Oregon State University Bee Lab is seeking input from beekeepers who are 18 or older in the form of a survey. The purpose of this research is to compare bee health to crop-specific variables such as hive management, pesticide exposure, and communication with growers of those crops. We will compare data from this survey to surveys of growers, and to field studies monitoring the health of selected experimental colonies.
Your participation is voluntary and your responses are anonymous. The time to take the survey will vary with the number of crops you pollinate. The security and confidentiality of information collected online cannot be guaranteed. Confidentiality will be kept to the extent permitted by the technology being used. Information collected online can be intercepted, corrupted, lost, destroyed, arrive late or incomplete, or contain viruses. To take the web based survey, follow the link below:
Click on this link to take the survey:
Dr. Louisa A. Hooven
Dr. Ramesh Sagili
Oregon State University
Study Title: Understanding pest and disease transmission dynamics and effects of agrochemicals on honey bee colonies pollinating crops in the western states
Funding for this project has been provided by Western Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, a program of the US Department of Agriculture.
At one point in the 1950s, Oliver Petty saw a need for outreach to the general public about honey bees and beekeeping. His solution was to set up a honey bee informational booth at the Oregon State Fair.
Oliver, serving as OSBA secretary at the time, set up, decorated, stocked the booth, and took it down single-handedly. The booth was informational only and was not staffed with beekeepers for a number of years.
In the early 1960s, Oliver expanded the booth to include volunteers to greet booth visitors and answer questions. A honey competition was added, which revved up enthusiasm for the annual event greatly. In 1967 the Willamette Valley Beekeepers Association was established. Soon after formation, the WVBA assumed management of the Oregon State Fair honey bee booth, with sponsorship of the OSBA. The WVBA did a stellar job in managing the booth for nearly 40 years!!!
In 2006, the WVBA returned management of the booth to the OSBA. A number of good things came out of this. One improvement was to make individual days reserved for our regional associations to staff. Later on, the OSBA was blessed with an Activities Chair, who, along with a large cast of dedicated volunteers, for a few years produced the finest State Fair Booth ever produced in Oregon. You can find pictures on www.orsba.org. The OSBA took a break from the fair in 2016.
It is now very important that we turn our attention to returning to the Oregon State Fair. There is no venue that can come close to the hands-on, one-on-one, good-will benefits that the booth provides for bees, beekeeping, beekeepers, and our industry.
The OSBA has an open position for Activities Director who would jump start this event. This is a very fun and manageable position. Check out the activities flowchart (click on image to enlarge or open/download here):
Notice how each aspect of the effort is very manageable. It is manageable and fun!
If you are interested in giving back to beekeeping and the industry by serving as Activities Director please shoot me an e-mail. I directed and co-directed the Oregon State Fair bee booth for many years alongside many great beekeepers, and will be happy to coach, support, and advise.
Harry Vanderpool, email@example.com
OSBA has been involved in providing testimony and/or following four proposed bills concerning beekeeping during the current legislative session. One of these bills, HB 2533A which was initiated by us will likely be adopted into law. The others have died in committee.
HB 2533A adds the definition for a nucleus colony to ORS 602 and then exempts nucleus colonies from the Department of Agricultural hive registration fees. The bill has passed the House of Representatives without a negative vote. On April 26 it was passed by the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources. It now has passed the Senate and has been signed by the Governor into law.
HB 3280 proposed to eliminate registration fees for the first year that hives are established. It was intended to apply primarily to hobby or backyard beekeepers. Since it is not necessary to register less than five hives it would not be of any benefit to most beginning hobbyist or backyard beekeepers. In addition the wording was confusing and the Department of Agriculture advised it would be very difficult to implement.
SB 785 died in Committee after a public hearing. It essentially copied and added to the Federal law that restricts the use of antibiotics for prophylactic use on livestock. We initially testified against the bill because the definition of livestock included honeybees and the Oregon Health Department was the designated enforcement agency. After proposed amendment changes we took a neutral stand on the bill.
SB 929 died in Committee after two public hearings. From the start we took a neutral position. The bill would have banned the use of neonics by anyone other then licensed pesticide applicators, except in a few limited circumstances. The bill’s sponsors argued that it was necessary to protect honeybees and other pollinators. They offered no proof that homeowner use of neonics was or is a problem for beekeepers. It seemed to us that they where merely trying to use beekeeping as a means to pursue an anti-pesticide agenda.
Those involved in the Sentinel Apiary Project, Bee Informed Partnership, note that they are breaking ground in modern beekeeping. The stage is set and like most big problems, collaboration is key. As a Sentinel Apiary participant, you will get the tools and information you need to take your beekeeping to the next level. By doing so you become a guardian of all bees in your region and together we will revolutionize beekeeping.
Applications are now available for 2017 and they are seeking beekeepers and beekeeping groups that manage 8 or more stationary colonies. They will arm you with data from Disease Load Monitoring and a Hive Scale so you may combat the challenges of beekeeping. To aid in this effort they’ve acquired funding to subsidize up to $300 toward the cost of a hive scale purchased for your Sentinel
Please note that the deadline is very soon!
FDA Needs to Know that Honey Does Not Have “Added Sugars”
- Click on this link and submit your thoughts: https://www.regulations.gov/ comment?D=FDA-2016-D-4414-0002
- What to include:
- You can be as brief or elaborate as you want, but include:
- Who you are
- Where in the country you are located
- What you do? Beekeeper, commercial honey producer, packer etc.
- How long you have been in the business
- A statement that you believe putting “Added Sugars” on the packaged honey label will confuse consumers and harm the market for honey
- Any other points you think would be helpful, including from the below list of “Key Messages”
- You can be as brief or elaborate as you want, but include:
- The honey industry supports and applauds the FDA for its continued commitment to informing consumer food choices through the nutrition facts label.
- Made by bees from the nectar of flowers, honey adds a hint of sweetness with a distinct flavor to beverages and recipes.
- We recognize that honey is a source of sugar added to foods; however, there is nothing added to pure honey itself.
- Listing the sugar content in honey as “Added Sugars” on the nutrition facts label implies adulteration of honey in its natural form.
- As stated in 21 US Code §342 (b)(4), “A food shall be deemed to be adulterated… if any substance has been added thereto or mixed or packed therewith so as to…make it appear better or of greater value than it is.”
- If consumers are informed through the Nutrition Facts label that honey contains “Added Sugars” then consumers may be led to believe that honey is adulterated, by the regulatory definition, with sugars added to develop or enhance its sweetness.
- Consumers will be misled to believe that honey is sweetened by adding an external sugar source rather than the naturally occurring sugars inherent in honey.
- There is a risk of consumer confusion if the nutrition facts label notes “Added Sugars” but a separate area on the label notes “naturally occurring sugar.” By definition, something added cannot also be naturally occurring. Our research shows that this will cause consumer confusion that hinders their ability to make informed food choices.
- We realize that honey is added to foods in preparation or manufacturing and in that case it is clearly an added sugar in those foods and would therefore be labeled as “Added Sugars” on the Nutrition Facts label. However, pure honey, itself, does not contain added sugars.
- We share the desire for clear, understandable nutrition information to aid consumer choice.
- Our desire, as is the FDA’s, is to inform consumer food choices to promote public health without confusion or misbranding around pure honey
- To that end, we are asking that the FDA consider listing the naturally occurring sugar content of 100% pure honey as a “Total Sugar” and not “Added Sugars.”
We have a sure sign of spring now as bee classes and bee schools blossom around the region. You can check out additional details about listings below as well as about other events at: https://orsba.org/osbaevents/. In addition, OSBA members can sign up for swarm calls if you’ve not already done so. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in bee removal, also.
February 25 (8:30 am – 4:00 pm): Central Oregon Beekeepers Bee School. Information: email@example.com; 541.420.0423.
February 25 (9:00 am – 4:00 pm): Linn-Benton Beekeepers Bee School. Information: 541.929.3524; firstname.lastname@example.org
February 27 (7:00 pm): Ross Conrad, author of Natural Beekeeping. Willamette Valley Beekeepers Association February meeting. Chemeketa Community College, Building 6, Auditorium.
March 4 (8:45 am–5 pm). Lane County Beekeepers Bee School. Pre-registration is required. Class size will be limited. Information: email@example.com; 541.344.4228.
March 4 (9 am–1 pm): Klamath Falls Beginning Beekeeping Class. KBREC Extension Office, 6923 Washburn Way, Klamath Falls. Information: 541.591.8995; www.klamathbeekeepers.org/Beekeeping_Classes/index.html
March 4 (9 am–5 pm): Third Annual BEEvent Pollinator Conference: The Plight of our Pollinators. Linn County Fairgrounds and Expo Center, Albany OR. Information: http://extension.oregonstate.edu/linn/beevent.
March 11 (9:00 am–4:00 pm): Astoria Bee School. Clatsop Community College, Columbia Hall, Room 219. $25 per person/$35 for people arriving together. Bring a sack lunch.
March 14 (7:00–9:00 pm), 16 (7:00–9:00 pm), 18 (8:00 am–noon), and June 3: Tualatin Valley Beekeepers Association Bee School. Information: http://tvba.weebly.com/about.html.
April 1: Tillamook County Beekeepers Bee Day. Grange Hall, next to fairgrounds.
April 8: Beekeeping 101. Columbia Gorge Community College. The Dalles. Information: 541.506.6011.
April 15: Beekeeping 101. Columbia Gorge Community College. The Dalles. Information: 541.506.6011.
April 15: Southern Oregon Beekeepers Association Spring Bee School. Information: www.southernoregonbeekeepers.org/news-and-events/soba-beginning-beekeeper-class.
April 22 (9:30 am–4:00 pm): Michael Bush, The Practical Beekeeper. 1785 Meyer Pkwy, Hood River. Information: http://bg-bees.com/michael-bush.
April 22: Portland Metro Beekeepers Bee Day. Foothills Honey Company, Colton. Information: portlandmetro.org.
April 29–30: Oregon Ag-Fest. Information: http://oragfest.com.