One year of BPRACTICES

After one year and a half from the start (February 2017), the BPRACTICES project has now come at its intermediate stage. The first year goals have been widely and successfully achieved, and the team is working hard to sustain this positive trend in the second half of the project.

Have a look at what we have done and to our future challenges to successfully improve the European Beekeeping sector considering the three pillars of sustainability – economy, environment and society.

Innovative diagnosis methods

Our preliminary research findings provided innovative methods of diagnosis, both in the field and in the laboratory, for the main honeybee diseases. Furthermore, we already identified GBPs to prevent disease occurrence and we classified them regarding their importance.

We planned field trials to test several prevention and control methods and, in Italy, Austria and Slovenia, we already concluded them. Data will be analysed in order to provide suitable and resilient solutions to diagnosis and control of bee diseases. All findings and future goals will contribute to the preclinical, preventive and sustainable approach of the BPRACTICES project, making the beekeeping sector more resilient through the efficient and sustainable management of honeybees and disease prevention.

Stakeholders engagement

We involved all stakeholders, including beekeeper associations (APIMONDIA), official veterinary services, international research associations (e.g. COLOSS) and Governmental Institutions (e.g. Italian Ministry of Health) in the activities of the BPRACTICES Project.

Ring tests were carried out and other collaborations for the validation and standardization of laboratory diagnostic methods were established. The BPRACTICES project also shared with the official veterinary services the innovations on field diagnosis and sampling for a more efficient diagnosis of honeybee diseases.

Communication and dissemination activities

BPRACTICES participated in communication activities through national and international congresses, meetings and scientific contributions, dissemination of the WP objectives and results in scientific workshops and through the website. The research uptake was monitored by continuous communication and verification of the activities with the BPRACTICES partners, official veterinary services and other scientific groups.

The overall communication strategy, shared and approved by all partners, and the pivotal involvement of APIMONDIA and FAO/TECA in communication activities enabled to successfully promote the project among the scientific and non-scientific beekeeping community, as it was the first important goal to achieve in the first half period of the project. Thanks to the participation to important events, gathering both, researchers and beekeepers, the BPRACTICES project had the opportunity to gain visibility among relevant parties.

What about the future?

The results obtained to this date will be further validated in order to

  • optimize the applicability of the scientific and technical advances to the beekeeping sector
  • assess the economic impact of those achievements
  • produce several scientific publications and contributions disseminating the results of the BPRACTICES

The BPRACTICES project

The BPRACTICES project is a European project funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme ERA-Net SusAn –European Research Area on Sustainable Animal Production Systems- that aims to develop new management practices (Good Beekeeping Practices – GBPs) adopting new clinical methods, biomechanical and innovative biomolecular techniques respecting the natural behaviour of bees.

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