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Bees! They're ripping my flesh off! Run away, your firearms are useless against them!



May 07, 2008 – Comments (4) | RELATED TICKERS: FDP , CQB.DL , CLX

"Bees! Bees! Bees in the car! Bees everywhere! God, they're huge! They're ripping my flesh off! Run away, your firearms are useless against them!"



Man I love that scene from Tommy Boy.  It’s a classic.  Despite their nasty propensity to sting people who mess with their hives (I’m still annoyed about being stung multiple times after flipping over an almuminum Sears row boat at the start of the season as a child), we need bees.  30% of the fruit- and vegetable-producing plants we rely for food need honeybee pollination.  Unfortunately, a mysterious disease is wiping out massive colonies of bees.  According to a recent survey 36.1% of the nation's commercially managed bee hives have been lost since last year!  This follows a massive 32% loss the year before.

A trend is definitely developing here.  The question is how can one profit from the demise of bees?  One brand that is being hurt by the bee deaths is Haagen-Daz.  Twenty-eight of the brand's ice cream flavors use berries, nuts, and fruits that depend upon honeybees for polination.  It is so concerned about this problem that it is donating up to $250,000 to Penn State and the University of California for Bee research (see site: Colony Collapse Disorder).  That is not an easy angle to play though because it is owned by the huge company General Mills and it lisences its brand to Nestle for use in the U.S. and Canada.

A few big sellers of fruits and berries include Fresh Del Monte Produce (FDP) and Chiquita Brands International (CQB), but neither of them jump off the screen as screaming short plays.  Clorox (CLX) owns Burt's Bees, the maker of beeswax lip balms, but this is a tiny part of its business.  Honey producers would probably be hurt by this, but I don't know any off of the top of my head.  Perhaps there is a Monsanto-like company that is working on a solution for the bee problem.  Let's put our collective heads together and think of a way to make money off of this.  Please post any ideas that you have in the comments section.  Thanks.


4 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On May 07, 2008 at 4:07 PM, PhillyGator (< 20) wrote:

You forgot the line- "They're sting-crazy!"

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#2) On May 07, 2008 at 5:00 PM, motleyanimal (38.38) wrote:

What we do is round up all the unemployed people and give them Q-Tips and make them climb the trees and polinate the damned things. (Note to investors: Q-Tips is owned by Unilever)

But what is more likely is that we have raised a generation of slacker bees. That's right. "Slacker Bees" that are too lazy to work!

BTW, the Q-Tip thing really works. I polinate my zucchini and squash plants with them when the bees are too busy watching MTV and downing brewskis.

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#3) On May 07, 2008 at 8:51 PM, devoish (71.85) wrote:

My understanding was that Monsanto is working on the bee problem, but not the solution. If memory serves, they make stuff that kills bugs, and a lot of the polinators noticed a new monsanto pesticide and then the bee problem.

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#4) On May 07, 2008 at 9:08 PM, devoish (71.85) wrote:

My apologies to Monsanto. The products I was thinking of are called neonicotinoids and affect insect nervous systems. Bayer is the manufacturer according to this article. One of the brand names they are sold under "Gaucho" was banned in France after causing a bee die off.

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