According to a report by the IPBES (Plateforme intergouvernementale sur la biodiversité et les services écosystémiques - Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services) published in 2016, certain pollinating species are in decline or even endangered. The decline of bee populations is a threat to biodiversity and agriculture. The OFA's aim is to secure pollination and eliminate the causes of bee mortality. One of the main causes of mortality is the action of the varroa parasite.
5% to 8% of global agriculture is directly dependent on pollination.
Varroa is a bee acarid that attacks larvae, nymphs and adult bees. However, we have noticed that certain bee colonies have developed a natural defense strategy against this parasite. The OFA therefore wants to study these colonies that defend themselves naturally against varroa. By identifying their genetic characteristics, it will become possible to breed strains of bees that have these characteristics and to generalize varroa resistance in bee populations.
The project's aim is to develop a natural, non-chemical and long-term solution to combat the varroa parasite.
The Air Liquide Foundation is supporting the OFA by financing the acquisition of insemination equipment, an incubator and frames for the beehives.