CropLife America (CLA), the nation's largest trade organization for promoting the safe and responsible use of crop protection products and its industry, renewed its commitment to better understand the nature of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in testimony delivered Thursday to the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Horticulture and Organic Agriculture.

CLA, an active member of the Native Pollinator in Agriculture Workgroup, is dedicated to understanding and helping develop solutions to the sudden disappearance of worker honey bees crucial to commercial pollination and agricultural production.

"Bees are critical to healthy and productive agriculture," said Beau Greenwood, Executive VP for Government Relations and Public Affairs. "Our industry endorses efforts to determine the origin of declining bee populations and stands ready to continue working with the USDA, Congress and all stakeholders to find a solution to Colony Collapse Disorder and safeguarding the future of our nation's crops." Greenwood further noted that there are clear benefits to pollinator health attributable to the careful use of many pesticides-such as miticides used to protect bees from such threats.

The importance of CCD and other pollinator-related issues is illustrated in the recently enacted Farm Bill which authorizes a multitude of programs intended to address these pressing concerns including the development and protection of pollinator habitats in conservation programs. In addition, the Farm Bill correctly identifies pollinator protection as high priority research and covers bees and honey production in agriculture disaster assistance programs.

CropLife supports these new authorities and commends the subcommittee and its leadership for recognizing the continued importance of addressing this issue.

"The crop protection industry is committed to the stewardship of its products and ensuring that bees are protected," said Greenwood. "We will continue to work with all stakeholders to develop solutions for reducing and eliminating threats to bee colonies and cooperating with government agencies and others in resolving this crisis to ensure the future of American agriculture."