Avocados might not be 'vegan' due to migratory beekeeping

Vegans may start avoiding avocados due to the migratory beekeeping used to pollinate avocado crops, according to reports on Wednesday.

Honeybees naturally pollinate fruits and vegetables, but there’s not enough bees to meet demand in the U.S., The Washington Post reported. So farmers employ a practice called migratory beekeeping.

The bees are shipped into these fields and pollinate the crops when the plants are fertile, The Post reported. Without the bee practice, the U.S. would lose one-third of its crops, the paper reported, citing The Scientific American magazine.

The bees gather pollen and nectar from “vast swaths of a single crop,” depriving them of the “far more diverse and nourishing diet” in wild habitats, the magazine reported. This practice boomerangs them from plenty of food to “borderline starvation,” as when a bloom is over, the bees have nothing to eat.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sent a statement to The Post about its position on migratory beekeeping.

"Going vegan is about making kind choices that bring about positive change. Average shoppers can't avoid produce that involved migratory beekeeping any more than they can avoid driving on asphalt, which has animal ingredients - but they can save nearly 200 animals' lives every year by choosing plant-based foods instead of meat, eggs, and dairy 'products,'" PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said.