On March 17, 2016 Florida Governor Rick Scott signed the 2016/2017 state budget that includes $2 million for a new bee research laboratory at the University of Florida. The legislation that provides the $2 million also requires a $500,000 match by the university and a 10% ($200,000) match by the Florida State Beekeepers Association (FSBA).
According to Tony Hogg, president of FSBA, “The new lab is critical to the future success in sustaining honey bee colonies and increasing our understanding of honey bee ecology, husbandry, conservation and integrated crop pollination. We have the opportunity to create the premier honey bee research laboratory in the United States.”
After the initial $200,000 match is raised, FSBA has pledged to raise an additional $1 million to complete the estimated $3.7 million research and teaching complex.
The new lab will bring researchers from around the world to work on critical problems facing U.S. beekeepers. Immediate goals for the laboratory are to:
- reduce colony loss rates and improve colony health,
- train tomorrow’s beekeepers and bee researchers.
Tax deductable contributions can be made on line at www.BuildTheBeeLab.com or www.FloridaBeekeepers.org.
Checks can be made payable to Florida State Beekeepers Bee Lab Fund and mailed to:
Florida State Beekeepers Assoc.
c/o Bob Livingston
7561 Old St Augustine Rd
Tallahassee, Fl 32311