Gallai N, Salles JM, Settele J, Vaissiere BE Economic valuation of the vulnerability of world agriculture confronted with pollinator decline. Ecol Econ

INRA, UMR LAMETA, 2 place Viala, 34060 Montpellier Cedex 1, France
Ecological Economics (Impact Factor: 2.72). 02/2009; 68(3):810-821. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2008.06.014
Source: RePEc


There is mounting evidence of pollinator decline all over the world and consequences in many agricultural areas could be significant. We assessed these consequences by measuring 1) the contribution of insect pollination to the world agricultural output economic value, and 2) the vulnerability of world agriculture in the face of pollinator decline. We used a bioeconomic approach, which integrated the production dependence ratio on pollinators, for the 100 crops used directly for human food worldwide as listed by FAO. The total economic value of pollination worldwide amounted to €153 billion, which represented 9.5% of the value of the world agricultural production used for human food in 2005. In terms of welfare, the consumer surplus loss was estimated between €190 and €310 billion based upon average price elasticities of − 1.5 to − 0.8, respectively. Vegetables and fruits were the leading crop categories in value of insect pollination with about €50 billion each, followed by edible oil crops, stimulants, nuts and spices. The production value of a ton of the crop categories that do not depend on insect pollination averaged €151 while that of those that are pollinator-dependent averaged €761. The vulnerability ratio was calculated for each crop category at the regional and world scales as the ratio between the economic value of pollination and the current total crop value. This ratio varied considerably among crop categories and there was a positive correlation between the rate of vulnerability to pollinators decline of a crop category and its value per production unit. Looking at the capacity to nourish the world population after pollinator loss, the production of 3 crop categories – namely fruits, vegetables, and stimulants - will clearly be below the current consumption level at the world scale and even more so for certain regions like Europe. Yet, although our valuation clearly demonstrates the economic importance of insect pollinators, it cannot be considered as a scenario since it does not take into account the strategic responses of the markets.

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Available from: Jean-Michel Salles, Oct 11, 2015
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    • "The past decade has seen a multitude of dramatic reports on honeybee (Apis mellifera) declines that raised great public and societal concern. Indeed the value of honeybees for human society has been estimated to exceed 153 billion (Gallai et al., 2008) primarily as key pollinators of many crops. The function as generalist pollinators also puts them into a key position for any ecosystem functioning that arguably exceeds any conceivable pecuniary value. "
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    ABSTRACT: Recent losses of honeybee (Apis mellifera) colonies have been linked to several non-exclusive factors; such as pests, parasites, pesticides (e.g., neonicotinoids) and other toxins. Whereas these losses pose a threat to apiculture, the number of globally managed colonies appeared to be less affected because beekeepers replace lost colonies. From a socioeconomic and ecological perspective the number of managed colonies is arguably more relevant when addressing the issue of apiculture and pollination services provided by honeybees. We here use the FAO data base to dissect the interactions between the global honey market and the number of colonies. Global scale analyses do not show a general colony decline. Whereas Western Europe and the US show suffer colony declines, other regions show considerable increase. We could not find any link between the colony dynamics and the occurrence of specific pathogens or the use of pesticides. In contrast, changes in the political and socioeconomic system show strong effects on apiculture. In addition, many countries show a tight negative correlation between honey import and the number of managed colonies. For some countries, the amount of honey produced per colony is highly positively correlated with the amount of honey imports, and we cannot exclude large scale relabeling of imported to nationally produced honey. It is very clear that honey trade is a dominating factor for the number of managed colonies since countries with a strong import and export ratio are those suffering most strongly from colony declines.
    Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 01/2016; 216:44-50. DOI:10.1016/j.agee.2015.09.027 · 3.40 Impact Factor
    • "Insects pollinate more than a third of all crops and honey bees are usually the most abundant pollinators in cultivated areas, carrying out 85% of the effective insect pollination (Barclay and Moffett, 1984; Robinson et al., 1989). Latest estimates of the benefit of pollination in the world reach about 153 thousand million euros (Gallai et al., 2009) and nearly 80% can be attributed directly or indirectly to honey bees (Robinson et al., 1989). With a serious decline in wild honey and solitary bees, the importance of beekeeping and managed hives in sustaining biodiversity and crop pollination is increasing (Moritz et al., 2010; Calderone, 2012). "
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    ABSTRACT: Samples of dead honey bees (Apis mellifera L.) were collected periodically from 4 different locations during citrus and stone fruit trees blooming season to evaluate the potential impact of agrochemicals on honey bee death rate. For the determination of mortality, dead honey bee traps were placed in front of the experimental hives entrance located in areas of intensive agriculture in Valencian Community (Spain). A total of 34 bee samples, obtained along the monitoring period, were analyzed by means of QuEChERS extraction method and screened for 58 pesticides or their degradation products by LC-MS/MS. An average of four pesticides per honey bee sample was detected. Coumaphos, an organophosphate acaricide used against varroosis in the experimental hives, was detected in 94% of the samples. However, this acaricide was unlikely to be responsible for honey bee mortality because its constantly low concentration during all the monitoring period, even before and after acute mortality episodes. The organophosphates chlorpyrifos and dimethoate, as well as the neonicotinoid imidacloprid, were the most frequently detected agrochemicals. Almost 80% of the samples had chlorpyrifos, 68% dimethoate, and 32% imidacloprid. Maximum concentrations for these three compounds were 751, 403, 223ng/g respectively. Influence of these pesticides on acute honey bee mortality was demonstrated by comparing coincidence between death rate and concentrations of chlorpyrifos, dimethoate and imidacloprid.
    Science of The Total Environment 09/2015; 541:33-41. DOI:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2015.08.131 · 4.10 Impact Factor
    • "KEY WORDS alfalfa leafcutting bee, fluctuating thermal regime, insect storage Insect pollinators in 2005 provided E153 billion (US$200 billion) of economic value to worldwide human food production (Gallai et al. 2009), a valuation that does not include nonfood agricultural production, cattle, or nonagricultural ecosystems. Gallai et al. (2009) also speculated about increases in health care costs as a result of decreases in fruit and vegetable availability due to declining populations of insect pollinators . Within the United States, agricultural valuation of insect pollinators for 2009 was calculated to be between US$26.7–28.7 billion, with the honey bee accounting for 60–64% of the valuation (Calderone 2012). "
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    Environmental Entomology 09/2015; DOI:10.1093/ee/nvv152 · 1.30 Impact Factor
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