STATEWIDE — The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) has announced that it is now accepting applications for the 2021 Beehive Distribution Program.
The Beehive Distribution Program provides free equipment directly to eligible individuals in the Commonwealth so that they may be able to construct their own beehives.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), approximately $15 billion worth of crops are dependent upon pollinators, including honeybees. However, during the last 50 years, the number of honeybees has declined. The USDA estimates that, since 2006, approximately 30 percent of beehives have collapsed due to various reasons including pesticide exposure, disease and parasites.
Through the VDACS program, Virginia residents ages 18 and over are eligible to receive up to three beehive units per year per household. Individuals who submit applications for beehive units will then be registered as a beekeeper with VDACS. Beehive equipment must be assembled and occupied within one year of receipt.
The beehive units distributed through the program are:
- Eight frame Langstroth medium brood box hive
- Eight frame Langstroth deep brood box hive
- Ten frame Langstroth medium brood box hive
- Ten frame Langstroth deep brood box hive
- Top bar hive.
Applications for distribution will be accepted through August 4, 2021.
For more information or to apply to participate in the program, visit the website for the VDACS Beehive Distribution Program. To learn more about the Virginia Bee Law, see Virginia Code § 3.2-4400 et seq.