Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Bee a Melon Lover

By Paige Schilt, June 20, 2012  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Paige Schilt

As we shared last week, Whole Foods Market® is building partnerships to help preserve dwindling honey bee populations. But we can’t do it without you — it would be like Batman without Robin, Holmes without Watson, Oprah without Gayle or…cantaloupe without bees! Wait…cantaloupe and bees? Yep, this dynamic duo achieves amazing things together.

We’ll hear more about their exploits later, but first, here’s where YOU come into the partnership: Cantaloupe is one of the hundreds of fruits pollinated by bees. From now through June 26, for every organic cantaloupe you purchase at Whole Foods Market, 25¢ will be donated to The Xerces Society. Donations are then matched through a USDA/Xerces Society partnership and the funds go to provide bee-friendly tools and training to our farmer partners. Are you on Pinterest and want to support bees even further?

For each repin of our Share the Buzz video, we'll donate $1 (up to $5,000) to The Xerces Society. We’re all about supporting win-win partnerships, and this one’s a real champ, because sweet and juicy cantaloupes are in season. They’re also loaded with vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium. So you can please your palate, nourish your body and help “bee the solution” to honey bee decline.

Cantaloupes are poster children for the importance of protecting honey bees. Like other vining crops, cantaloupes require pollination in order to bear fruit. But here’s the tricky part: in the course of a day cantaloupe flowers open shortly after sunrise and close by the afternoon. When the weather’s hot, the pollination window shrinks even more, and cantaloupe blooms may be open for business for only a few minutes in the early morning. That’s where bees — particularly honey bees — come in. Honey bees are incredibly loyal, visiting a single plant species on each foraging flight. They’re also hard workers, visiting more flowers per day than most other pollinators.

So, the next time you bite into a refreshing mouthful of melon, remember to thank a honey bee! We hope you’re psyched to appreciate the fruits of this productive partnership. Here are a few recipes to help spark your imagination:

What’s your favorite way to enjoy cantaloupe this season?