Katie Carr founder of tommy & lottie and Nicky Halloran founder of Dizzy Bee Kitchen have come together for World Bee Day to share their love of bees and food. Sharing top tips about how you can individually help save bees, how their brands are helping to protect bees and an easy and healthy, gluten free flapjack recipe, (containing honey of course!) that you can bake and enjoy.
Bees are crucial for our survival, they, alongside other animals such as birds, butterflies, beetles, moths, bats and even wasps are important pollinators for crops/food for us to eat. In fact more than 75% of of the world’s food crops depend, to some extent, on pollination. Sadly there has been a decline in the population of pollinators, especially bees and butterflies, mainly due to intensive agricultural practices, changes in land use, pesticides (including neonicotinoid insecticides), alien invasive species, diseases, pests, and climate change. Many of our wildflower meadows and bee friendly plants have been reduced dramatically over the last decade so lets bring back these wildflower and native plants our bees need to thrive and survive. For World Bee Day its so important to highlight and give bees the shout out they deserve. As Albert Einstein said: “If the bee disappears from the surface of the Earth, man would have no more than four years left to live.” A scary thought, but we can all help turn this around.
Top tips on how we can help bees:
- plant a diverse set of native plants, which flower at different times of the year;
- mow your lawn less often and take part in #nomowmay;
- create a wild area in your garden, which you don’t cut back;
- create a bee home. Lots of lovely bee houses out there ready to go or make your own;
- buy raw honey from local farmers;
- buy products from sustainable agricultural practices;
- buy organic food and organic cotton clothing;
- avoid pesticides, fungicides or herbicides in our gardens;
- protect wild bee colonies when possible;
- making a bee water fountain by leaving a water bowl outside;
- raising awareness around us by sharing this information within our communities and networks; The decline of bees affects us all!
Nicky is a trained chef, with a passion for food, and believes that a varied diet will enhance health and wellbeing for adults and children, As a mum of three, Nicky started making granola as an answer to a need in her own family life so Dizzy Bee Kitchen was born. The current Dizzy Bee range includes ready to go deliciously balanced breakfast cereals which include a gluten and grain free variety. Dizzy Bee is partnered with The Bee Friendly Trust and pledges a donation from every sale. The Bee Friendly Trust’s mission is to create habitats for honey bees and all pollinators to thrive, by transforming neglected or unused areas of land into pollen-rich wildflower gardens. Their work is really hands on – they install bee friendly flowering planters, micro wildlife gardens, orchards in underused areas like forgotten parts of railway platforms and run educational and community projects.
Katie has a passion for wildlife and spent her childhood surrounded in nature growing up in rural East Sussex. Katie’s Mum, a keen gardener grew lots of fruit and vegetables and was a huge supporter of organic produce, understanding the importance it had on the environment and wildlife. After a career in retail and marketing and the birth of her two children Katie launched, tommy & lottie a non seasonal, unisex, ethical and sustainable brand producing well made, organic cotton clothing, back packs and wall prints with a wildlife theme. Using only sustainably sourced, organic and oeko tex cottons to make the clothing and recycled materials such as plastic bottles to make the back packs. tommy & lottie are proud tp be partnered with the Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust where money is donated to the trust from sales of their bee collection which includes t shirts, sweatshirts, wall prints and back packs, helping to protect bees natural habitats throughout Hertfordshire and Middlesex. The trust look after over 40 nature reserves, they educate, protect, connect and care for wildlife so are an important charity to support when it comes to saving the bees! Grab yourself a bee pack here.
Check out this quick, healthy, gluten free, flapjack recipe ideal to have as a tasty treat. You can easily swap some alternatives for a vegan version.
Cherry and Almond Honey Flapjacks
140g soft brown sugar
2tbsp local honey
175g gluten free rolled oats – we use glebe farm
100g frozen cherries defrosted, drain excess liquid and slice in half
100g flaked almonds
Pre heat oven at 160/140 fan. You’ll need and small baking tin approx. 20cm x 20cm and lined with greaseproof paper.
- Gently melt the butter and sugar together, take off the heat.
- Add the honey to the melted mix then add to the oats and stir well
- Add the sliced cherries and stir in
- Spoon into the tin and press down firmly, sprinkle the almonds on top and press these down
- Bake for 35-40 mins
- Allow to cool for at least an hour before you nibble, leave longer if possible
- Swap the cherries for any other frozen fruit, soft fruit, seed or nut!
- To make a vegan version swap the honey for maple syrup and butter for a vegan spread/butter