Exclusion of bees as a species from the Livestock Act

Representatives of the Romanian Association of Beekeepers are expressing concern at the danger of excluding bees as a species from the Livestock Act in line with a decision by the parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, fearing that it will do immeasurable damage to the sector. Beekeepers face a number of major challenges, ranging from climate change, depopulation, high mortality rates and plant protection products to unfavourable market trends.

They have accordingly been campaigning for the inclusion of bees in the new Livestock Act, given their importance in this sector, particularly in Romania, the fourth largest European producer, averaging 22 000 tonnes of honey annually. In 2015, the number of bee colonies stood at 1.47 million. Romania currently has 1.45 million bee colonies, with an annual increase of 3-5%. Over 40 000 beekeepers are registered at national level, 60% of them being members of the Association of Beekeepers.

In the light of this, how does the Commission view the consequences of the exclusion of bees as a species from the new Livestock Act?