Bee the Change: Häagen-Dazs and the Plight of the Honey Bee


Haagen Dazs loves bees

Long committed to sustainability, Häagen-Dazs’ latest initiative aims to support dwindling bee populations by installing one of the largest, privately-funded pollinator habitats on its almond supplier’s land in California’s Central Valley. It’s also releasing a 360 virtual reality experience, The Extraordinary Honeybee, to educate the public about the plight of the bee.

A stalwart supporter of sustainable agriculture practices, the “Häagen-Dazs Loves Honey Bees” program launched in 2008. Its latest installation consists of six and a half miles of hedgerow and 11,000 native drought-tolerant shrubs and flowering plants, impacting 840 acres of farmland.

A pollinator habitat provides habitat for multiple wildlife such as birds, serves as windbreak and helps stabilize the soil and improve water quality.

As the Nestlé-owned (and Brooklyn-born) brand states:

Häagen-Dazs loves Honey Bees. More than forty percent of the Häagen-Dazs ice cream, gelato, sorbet and yogurt flavours – like Strawberry, Vanilla Swiss Almond and Mango – rely on the good work of honey bees to pollinate fruits and nuts. But did you know honey bees are disappearing at an alarming rate? Research and action is needed. We have a mission to help save the honey bees. We are funding important research and working to raise awareness of the issue.

Alex Placzek, Director of the Häagen-Dazs brand stated that, “Bees are critical to the environment, supporting one-third of the world’s crops, including ingredients that are used in more than one-third of Häagen-Dazs ice cream flavors.”

“Consumers want to know that they will be able to enjoy their favorite foods for years to come and that the ingredients used are grown in a responsible way. By proactively getting involved on the farms of our suppliers, we are staying true to our journey that began nearly 10 years ago to ensure that bees can continue to thrive and enrich the planet.”

To educate consumers on the plight of the honey bee, Häagen-Dazs is creating an immersive, 360 virtual reality experience, The Extraordinary Honeybee. Available in June and teased below, the journey shrinks viewers to the size of a honey bee and a look at the world from a bee’s perspective.

The message: “Honey bees pollinate one-third of the foods we eat, including many of the ingredients we use to make our pure and simple ice creams, sorbets, frozen yogurts, and bars. Unfortunately, honey bee populations are disappearing at an alarming rate. Over the last five years, we’ve lost over one-third of our honey bee colonies in America, due to factors such as colony collapse disorder (ccd), an alarming phenomenon that occurs when honey bees mysteriously desert their hive and die.”

Häagen-Dazs now offers ice cream and sorbet in over 65 flavors worldwide and since 2008 has donated more than $1 million to honey bee research through partners U.C. Davis, Penn State and the Xerces Society.

The beloved ice cream brand is shedding light on the increasingly apparent fact that invertebrates can no longer be neglected and abused in consumer eco-systems as they are a critical player. “If human beings were to disappear tomorrow, the world would go on with little change,” biologist E.O. Wilson wrote. “But if invertebrates were to disappear, I doubt that the human species could last more than a few months.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *