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Bee deaths 'not down to pesticides'

Last week the European Commission proposed that member states restrict the use of certain classes of pesticide that are believed to be harmful to bees.

The Today programme's science correspondent Tom Feilden explains that this comes after the European Food Safety Authority (Efsa) issued guidance on the use of chemical neonicotinoids, in which they recognised "high acute risks" to bees who encountered residue from these sprays in pollen and nectar in crops like oilseed rape and sunflowers.

Speaking to Today presenter Justin Webb, Martin Taylor, chairman of Syngenta, explained how the pesticide industry is reacting:"You have to look after beneficial insects, and the industry knows this very well."

"There is no correlation between where the product is used and where the bees are dying," he added.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today Programme on Friday 8 February 2013.

  • 08 Feb 2013