Today, during the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, the Berne Declaration (EvB) and Greenpeace Switzerland awarded the dreaded Public Eye Awards in terms of ecological and social irresponsible business practices.
Over 280’000 people submitted an online vote this year for the Public Award. The Public award goes to the Gazprom oil company, and the Jury Award goes to the American textile giant Gap.
Thousand of citizens also voted for Syngenta, BASF and Bayer, companies producing, among others, systemic pesticides entering the flowers and poisoning bees. These pesticides are even more alarming since they spread in soil, water and air, acting on bees at tiny doses hardly detectable by measuring instruments. Moreover, effects on the human brain of these products have also been discovered.
“We must ensure that our economic system is compatible with our values and not that the market dictates how it functions. The Public Eye Awards make us aware of our lost values”, argues Tomáš Sedláček, the key note speaker at this year Public Eye Awards and Economist from the Czech Republic.
Syngenta, Bayer and BASF have been nominated by Bee Life European Beekeeping Coordination with the support of more than 50 organizations, including Slow Food, i.e. ‘the Alliance to save the Bees and the Agriculture’.
The support of the public is essential. It encourages beekeepers to continue taking actions against systemic pesticides, to protect bees, the environment and at the end, human health. Facing the current economic model dominated by finance, policy measures must be taken; citizens and companies must act as well to put in place an agricultural and economic model, which work with the Nature.
A first measure to be taken is the full ban of systemic pesticides toxic for bees, and the development and the implementation of non-chemical alternatives for farmers. In the future, our society will have to evolve towards an agricultural model, on a human scale, aiming to maintain the harmony of ecosystem and enabling bees to live and continue contributing to the biodiversity of our planet, as they have been doing since millions of years.
“Syngenta, Bayer and BASF, ranked second in the Public Eye 2014: it symbolically demonstrates the concern of a large number of people on pesticides and on the quality of food they eat. It also demonstrates the wish for a change in order to build a food system that leaves room for bees” said Francesco Panella, President of Bee Life.