To raise aware­ness of just how cru­cial pol­li­na­tors are to our food sys­tem, the University Heights Whole Foods Market, Rhode Island store tem­porar­ily removed all pro­duce that comes from plants depen­dent on pol­li­na­tors. They pulled from shelves 237 of 453 products—52 per­cent of the department’s nor­mal prod­uct mix.

Products removed included:

  • Apples
  • Onions
  • Avocados
  • Carrots
  • Mangos
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Honeydew
  • Cantaloupe
  • Zucchini
  • Summer squash
  • Eggplant
  • Cucumbers
  • Celery
  • Green onions
  • Cauliflower
  • Leeks
  • Bok choy
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Broccoli rabe
  • Mustard greens

To help sup­port hon­ey­bee pop­u­la­tions, for every pound of organic sum­mer squash sold at Whole Foods Market stores from June 12-25 the com­pany will donate 10 cents to The Xerces Society for pol­li­na­tor preservation.

“Pollinators are a crit­i­cal link in our food sys­tem. More than 85% of earth’s plant species—many of which com­pose some of the most nutri­tional parts of our diet—require pol­li­na­tors to exist. Yet we con­tinue to see alarm­ing declines in bee num­bers,” said Eric Mader, assis­tant pol­li­na­tor con­ser­va­tion direc­tor at The Xerces Society. “Our orga­ni­za­tion works with farm­ers nation­wide to help them cre­ate wild­flower habi­tat and adopt less pesticide-intensive prac­tices. These sim­ple strate­gies can tip the bal­ance back in favor of bees.”

Whole Foods Market offers four more ways to “bee part of the solu­tion.” Details are online atwww.wholefoodsmarket.com/sharethebuzz.