Proceedings of the Standing Senate Committee on
Agriculture and Forestry
Issue 5 - Evidence - Meeting of February 25, 2014
OTTAWA, Tuesday, February 25, 2014
The Standing Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry met this day at
5:21 p.m. to continue its study on the importance of bees and bee health in the
production of honey, food and seeds in Canada.
Senator Percy Mockler (Chair) in the chair.
The Chair: Welcome to this meeting of the Standing Senate Committee on
Agriculture and Forestry.
My name is Percy Mockler, senator from New Brunswick and chair of the
committee. I would ask senators to introduce themselves starting with the deputy
chair of the committee.
Senator Mercer: Terry Mercer, Nova Scotia.
Senator Oh: Victor Oh, Ontario.
Senator Rivard: Michel Rivard, Quebec.
Senator Ogilvie: Kelvin Ogilvie, Nova Scotia.
The Chair: The committee is continuing its study on the importance of
pollinators in agriculture and measures to protect them.
Our order of reference is:
That the Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture and Forestry be
authorized to examine and report on the importance of bees and bee health in
the production of honey, food and seed in Canada. In particular, the
committee shall be authorized to examine this topic within the context of
the importance of bees in pollination to produce food, especially fruit and
vegetables, seed for crop production, and honey production in Canada.
In addition, the study aims to recognize the current state of native
pollinators, leafcutters and honeybees in Canada.
As well, we have honeybee health, including disease, parasites and pesticides
in Canada and globally.
We will also be looking at strategies to recommend to governments, producers
and industry to ensure bee health.
Honourable senators, we have two witnesses. From the Ontario Beekeepers
Association, we will hear from Mr. Dan Davidson, President.
On behalf of the Senate committee, I thank you for accepting our invitation.
Dan Davidson, President, Ontario Beekeepers Association: Thank you for
The Chair: We are also welcoming Jean-Pierre Chapleau, Beekeeper and
Co-Director of the Health Folder Bees/ Pesticides, Fédération des apiculteurs du
Mr. Chapleau, thank you for accepting our invitation.
I would ask the witnesses to make their presentations, after which we will
have questions from senators.
I have been informed by the clerk that Mr. Davidson will present first,
followed by Mr. Chapleau.
Mr. Davidson, go ahead.
Mr. Davidson: Good evening. The Ontario Beekeepers Association thanks
the chair and honourable senators for inviting us to present to the Standing
Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry.
The OBA is an agricultural association incorporated under the Government of
Ontario's Agricultural and Horticultural Organizations Act. Our mission is to
ensure a thriving and sustainable beekeeping industry in Ontario. To that end,
we support honeybee health and research, promote the value of Ontario honey and
deliver practical training and information to Ontario's beekeepers.
While Ontario's honey production at $20.4 million represents only about 12
per cent of the value of Canadian honey, Ontario's beekeeping industry plays a
significantly larger role in the pollination of Canada's fruits and vegetables.
Fully 37 per cent of Canada's produce is grown in Ontario, more than any other
province. Ontario's honeybee industry is not only responsible for much of the
fresh food Canadians eat but also contributes nearly three quarters of a billion
dollars to the Canadian economy through the pollination services we provide to
Ontario fruit and vegetable growers and to the blueberry and cranberry growing
regions of Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.
The Ontario beekeeping industry is different in another way as well: the
degree to which it has been affected by the indiscriminate agricultural use of
neonicotinoid pesticides. In 2012, Ontario experienced significant losses of
bees and colonies across southern Ontario. Health Canada's Pest Management
Regulatory Agency's investigation indicated that corn seeds treated with
neonicotinoids contributed to the majority of the bee mortalities.
They suggested that this was largely due to dust from the seeds, with unusual
weather conditions being a contributing factor. But in the spring and summer of
2013, even with more typical weather patterns and adjustments to planting
practices, bee losses were at least as high as the previous year. After PMRA's
extensive investigation in both 2012 and 2013, they concluded that: ``Current
agricultural practices related to the use of neonicotinoid treated corn and
soybean seed are not sustainable.''
The Ontario Beekeepers Association agrees with PMRA. Since 2007, coinciding
with the extended use of neonicotinoids on soy and corn, Ontario beekeepers have
lost an average of 30 per cent of their colonies each winter, compared to an
average of 18 per cent prior to 2007. However, this does not reflect the full
impact. The fact is that colonies weak from exposure to toxic pesticides cannot
recover from winter damage. Ongoing exposure even to sublethal doses causes
colonies to decline throughout the spring, summer and fall. Bee losses now have
to be assessed year round.
Despite these losses, Ontario's beekeepers have managed to maintain their
inventory by raising queens and dividing surviving colonies. However, these
hives are less populous and less productive for the season, and the additional
costs associated with this practice erode the ability of beekeepers to make a
living. This year, Ontario's honey crop declined by 32.6 per cent, twice the
national average. We are hearing from beekeepers, some third- and
fourth-generation, that their businesses may not last another year.
Neonicotinoids are now the most widely used group of insecticides in the
world and their use has been steadily increasing. Although they were promoted as
safer for beneficial insects than older insecticides, the evidence does not bear
this out. Neonicotinoids are systemic and, therefore, pollinators can be exposed
through multiple routes. While the dust generated from planting coated seeds can
cause direct mortality of bees, less than 2 per cent of the active ingredients
are released through the dust during planting. The remainder is found in pollen
and nectar, and also in water and soil, and is known to accumulate over an
Even low concentrations can put bees at risk. Neonicotinoids are thousands of
times more lethal to bees than are older insecticides like DDT. Research shows
that bees experiencing sublethal effects encounter complications such as changes
in foraging behaviour or delayed development. As well, it is important to stress
that neonicotinoids are not separate from other problems facing honeybees, such
as varroa, viruses and nutrition. Exposure to these pesticides makes other
problems worse by compromising the bees' immune systems, reducing navigation
skills and destroying habitat.
Why is there a disproportionate effect on Ontario? The answer to this
question is largely due to the structure of Ontario's farmland and the
indiscriminate use of these pesticides. Corn and soybeans at 2.7 million acres
comprise more than 50 per cent of Ontario's field crops. These crops use at
least four times more active neonicotinoid pesticide per acre than canola uses,
the main crop in the west. The intensive planting of crops that are heavy users
of neonicotinoids in Ontario makes it difficult for commercial beekeepers to
avoid exposure to these pesticides.
While our counterparts in Alberta have not yet reported direct bee kills from
neonicotinoids, we believe that Ontario's bees represent the proverbial canary
in the coal mine. Research coming out of the University of Saskatchewan has
discovered widespread residues in millions of acres across the Prairies.
As beekeepers in other provinces learn to recognize the effects of
neonicotinoid poisoning and as these persistent chemicals accumulate in the soil
and contaminate surface water, we can anticipate increasing reports of losses of
bees across the country.
But the impact is not limited to honeybees. Neonicotinoids pose a risk to
bumblebees, wild bees, birds and aquatic invertebrates. Because of the
widespread use and environmental persistence, neonicotinoids are a threat to a
wide range of beneficial wildlife in all provinces. As well, they negatively
impact our beneficial arthropods that provide biological control of crop pests
and soil invertebrates that are critical to soil health.
We believe that the continuing use of neonicotinoids at the expense of
pollinators, beneficial insects and soil invertebrates will threaten the
ecosystem upon which Canada's food production depends. Therefore, we ask the
committee to recommend that regulators immediately suspend all conditional
registrations on neonicotinoid products until we understand how to manage the
With reference to the European Commission's decision last year to restrict
the use of neonicotinoid pesticides for two years, the EU's action was a
response to the European Food Safety Authority's scientific report that
identified high acute risks for bees based on over 150 scientific studies. We,
too, believe this to be the only effective option to protect honeybees and other
pollinators. It is our understanding that PMRA has the capacity to suspend
immediately the use of pesticides when the strength of research supports such a
decision. We believe that the balance of scientific evidence of the effect on
pollinators and our ecosystem is compelling enough to warrant such action.
We have memory sticks for each of you with information on resources and
research that will be helpful in your deliberation. As well, we have included a
four-minute video produced by the Ontario Beekeepers Association that
illustrates the impact of neonicotinoids on a third generation Ontario
On behalf of the Ontario Beekeepers Association, I thank you for this
opportunity to present to the committee and I welcome any questions.
The Chair: Thank you, Mr. Davidson.
Mr. Chapleau, the floor is yours.
Jean-Pierre Chapleau, Beekeeper and Co-Director of the Health Folder
Bees/Pesticides, Fédération des apiculteurs du Québec: Thank you for
inviting us. We also appreciate the fact that your committee, honourable
senators, is looking into the bee issue. I think this is very important and
helps recognize the fact that there is a problem, that something is wrong, as
you have all realized.
I represent the Fédération des apiculteurs du Québec — Quebec beekeepers'
association. There are about 50,000 beehives in Quebec. I have been a beekeeper
my whole life. My career is nearing its end, and I have far fewer hives than I
used to. During my most productive period, I had about 1,000 hives and
specialized in queen bees, which were sold to my fellow beekeepers across Canada
and even abroad. I had 2,200 small hives for queen bee breeding.
I have also been involved in beekeeping training, unionization — I was the
director of the Fédération des apiculteurs and the co-director of the Canadian
Honey Council — and, towards the end of my career, research. I have conducted
research projects on alternative methods for controlling varroa mites — which
you have heard much about — in conjunction with Université Laval.
I am glad to be reaching the final stages. You have heard about many aspects
of the bee health issue, and it must be recognized from the outset that the
causes of that problem are numerous.
The lack of plant diversity has appropriately been talked about as a cause of
Various health problems have been put forward, including varroa. That is all
true. You have also heard people talk about pesticides and have asked many
questions on that topic, on the relationship between bees and pesticides — more
specifically the notorious neonicotinoids, which are so difficult to pronounce
and are commonly known as ``neonics.'' I will refer to them as such, with your
The lack of biodiversity and the varroa issues are partially under the
beekeeper's control. Conversely, the pesticide issue — and this has been brought
up by some of the witnesses who testified before me — is entirely beyond the
beekeeper's control. If I may, I would like to focus on that aspect by
attempting to shed light on the elements of the problem that have not been
explained so far by your previous witnesses.
The first thing you need to realize when it comes to this is how extensive
the changes made in the 1990s were in the area of plant health methods — the way
plants are being protected against insect pests. Two innovations appeared at the
same time. We saw the arrival of a new family of molecules — the notorious
``neonics'' — which operate in a completely different way, as very low doses are
required. At the same time, a new way to apply pesticides was created.
Traditionally, pesticides were applied through external spraying. In the 1990s,
we witnessed the emergence of systemic insecticides, which are added to the
plant's own fluid. This technological feat appeared to be full of promise. The
technology actually does have many positive aspects. However, when these
technological changes were implemented, the potential impacts at various levels
were not taken into consideration.
Pesticides have been around for a long time, and beekeepers have been dealing
with them for just as long. So why is it that we are suddenly faced with these
problems? That is not only due to the new family of molecules. All pesticides
are toxic, and all are made to kill insects. The bee is an insect. The
explanation lies in the way the bee is exposed to those pesticides.
Traditionally, the bee would or would not be sprayed, and, consequently, would
or would not die. Nowadays, the bee is exposed in many ways. It can be exposed
to airborne particles. It can also be exposed through plant nectar — either from
cultivated plants themselves, or successional plants — because the molecules
have long residual action in the soil, and successional cultures continue to
absorb the pesticides pervading the soil. Those molecules happen to have long
residual action in soil, and that action can last many years.
Bees are also exposed through water. Pesticides end up in water, as well. The
molecules are hydrosoluble because they need to be in order to circulate in the
plants. So they are released into water, including surface water. Bees are
exposed when they drink, or when they take in drops from leaves — referred to as
the guttation phenomenon.
The ways bees are exposed have increased. At the same time, their exposure is
year-round, and it used to be on a one-time basis, when the farmers were likely
to use an insecticide upon noting the presence of insect pests threatening their
crop. So pesticides were being used to respond to a real problem. Systemic
insecticide technology encourages farmers to use insecticides just in case, and
that is part of the problem. Once the technology became available, farmers
started using insecticides automatically, by introducing the culture into the
So the bee issue has to do with the fact that there are more exposure
pathways and that areas under insecticide treatment have been increased. Simply
put, this a matter of overdose. There are no healthy pesticides, but bees are
currently being overexposed.
What to make of that situation? This phenomenon clearly has an impact on bee
health. That impact has been described fairly well by those who testified before
me. However, the users of those products, among others, have expressed some
concerns. It is fair to want to minimize issues when it suits us to use the
product, and I understand that. The science is there, and a huge amount of
scientific data is available, but I can understand that going to the library and
searching through the whole body of scientific work can be intimidating. I have
with me a meta-analysis with 160 references on the effects on pollinators alone.
There are 160 bibliographic references at the end. Going through all this is a
However, at the end of the document I sent you, there are three meta-analyses
I suggest you read. The first one concerns the effects on managed and wild
pollinators. The second one is about the overall environmental effects. And the
last one looks at the effects on beneficial insects, which are useful to
agriculture — since not only pollinators are affected, but insects that eat
pests, such as ladybugs, are also affected.
The science is there, and scientific data from Quebec is also available. I
will tell you about that during the question period, if you are interested.
Research conducted in Quebec has helped verify in the field the effects on bees.
Acute toxicity effects are well known, as they are the most visible ones. If
we analyse a bunch of dead bees and find pesticides in their bodies, we have
proof. However, things get more complicated when we talk about chronic,
sublethal effects. Unfortunately, those are the most numerous ones. They cause
the bees to underdevelop. Some bees get lost in fields and never return. Their
cognitive faculties are affected, as are their olfactory memory and immune
system. Their hypopharyngeal glands — I feel sorry for our interpreters — shrink
and reduce the nursing capacities of nurse bees in our hives. That leads to
shorter lifespans of our larvae and, later on, our adult bees. These problems
are all extremely difficult to measure, but many research projects have
confirmed those effects.
I was talking about difficulties for bees, but a very important point that
should be taken into consideration — and my colleague brought this up - is that
neonics are being talked about as a bee problem. I do not think that this is a
bee issue. The bee is an indicator of a much broader problem. I think we have an
environmental issue, whose scope is significantly wider.
The first thing that should be looked into is the matter of water. Since the
molecules are hydrosoluble, they are very mobile in water, in the environment.
Wherever we look — in agricultural areas, in water — we will find
neonicotinoids. In Quebec, 16 rivers were tested, and the presence of neonics
was established in all 16 of them. Wells in potato growing areas were tested,
and they have been monitored for over 10 years. Each new sampling reveals higher
and higher proportions of those particles. At this point, over 60 per cent of
wells contain imidacloprid, one on the active molecules. And this is not only
the case in Quebec. My colleague mentioned that marshes in Saskatchewan were
tested, and those molecules were also found there. They were found wherever
tests were done. Once again, this data is scientifically backed.
Something that came up a number of times when you put questions to the
representatives of farmers' associations you heard from is the agronomic
justification for the use of neonics. Those people insisted on the importance of
basing our practices and decisions on science. According to the transcript I
read, your questions on the scientific basis for the use of neonicotinoids
received no answers. However, relevant scientific data is available. I know of
three studies I could send you. One of them comes from Quebec. It was carried
out by the Centre de recherché sur les grains — grain research centre. Its goal
was to determine the prevalence of insect pests in 14 fields divided into
treated and untreated lots. The crops were monitored, and the conclusion, to be
brief, was that there appeared to be no significant differences in yield in the
studies. Another study was carried out in Minnesota, I think, by a Mr. Krupke,
and it took place over three years instead of two. The conclusion was the same.
The third study involved soya. No increase in the yield was established. An
attempt was made to treat aphids. There was no impact on the aphids because the
insecticide dosage was minimal when the aphids arrived. However, there was a 25
per cent reduction in the populations of ladybugs, which eat aphids.
In my opinion, it must be impressed upon the users of neonics that practices
have to be based on science. Currently, the available indicators do not prove
that neonicotinoids are never needed, but they do prove that we are far from
needing them all the time. The issue with the current situation is that the
prevalence of use is not consistent with the needs.
The Fédération des apiculteurs du Québec has invested a great deal of effort
with farmers over the past three years. I will tell you more about that later.
The effort resulted in guidelines for screening soil-borne insects. We have
talked to farmers, and a consultation committee has taken all kinds of
initiatives to try to encourage farmers to return to what is called integrated
pest management. Currently, we have to recognize that there are tremendous
forces preventing us from reaching our objectives. Seed companies have very low
sales of untreated grains, despite all the efforts being made. The Union des
producteurs agricoles — a farmers' union organization — which had fairly
significant means at its disposal, was one of our partners. Quebec's department
of agriculture sent a letter to all farmers asking them to use pesticides
rationally. That did not change the volume of sales. There are major issues with
the industry structure, product marketing and, I would say, the kind of
dependence that has developed among farmers in terms of pesticides.
Before I finish my presentation, I would like to talk about the Pest
Management Regulatory Agency, PMRA. The witnesses you heard before me talked a
lot about that body. Witnesses often said that they appreciated the fact that
the PMRA made science-based decisions. I will put forward an alternative view.
In my opinion, there have been some major problems with the PMRA's handling of
the neonics issue. An agency like ours is expected to act as a filter and verify
and measure the hazards inherent to insecticide use before granting them
marketing authorization. The data used is normally based on science.
Unfortunately, that did not work in the case of neonicotinoids, and there were
some irregularities. I will tell you about the main ones.
The most used product is clothianidin, whose brand name is Poncho. Virtually
all corn is treated with Poncho. That product has never been fully assessed. It
was issued what is called a temporary registration. I mentioned this in the
document I submitted to you that has probably been translated. The information I
am giving you comes from the Poncho registration report. The product could not
receive a continued registration because the data on a number of aspects was
missing. The producer, Bayer, was asked for that data, which had to do with
safety for pollinators, immunotoxicity and leeching. Despite this, the product
has had a temporary registration for 10 years. To my understanding, a temporary
registration can be used in an emergency situation and would be revoked if any
issues arose. Despite the burden of proof, the registration has not been
It would be my pleasure to tell you more if you have any questions.
Senator Mercer: Thank you for being here. It was very informative, as
Mr. Davidson, you talked about shipping bees to Nova Scotia, New Brunswick
and Quebec, and bees are being produced for the Ontario market itself. How many
colonies do you export, or are you just exporting queens?
Mr. Davidson: There are colonies of bees that go to the East Coast. I
think last year it was around 26,000 hives from Ontario. If I'm allowed to pass
out these smart sticks — or all senators should have received a
frequently-asked- questions sheet. The exact numbers should be on there. I think
it was around 26,000.
Senator Mercer: We have heard before from many people that one of the
issues is communication between beekeepers and farmers with regard to the
location of hives and when farmers are going to spray. A recent Government of
Australia study said that:
. . . insecticides are not a highly significant issue, even though they are
clearly toxic to bees if used incorrectly. Incidents of beekeepers losing
bee colonies as a result of insecticide use do occur, but this most often
arises because there has been a break-down of communication between the
farmer and the affected beekeeper.
How true is that Australian statement here in Canada? We have heard before
that sometimes the farmer doesn't know where the hive is; sometimes the farmer
isn't spraying at the right time. We have also had farmers here who told us that
they're very careful and that if the wind is blowing in a certain direction,
they will wait to spray because of the location of hives. They want you to have
healthy hives as well as you do. So how true is that statement?
Mr. Davidson: That statement is completely true when you are talking
about foliar applications of insecticides. But as Mr. Chapleau described very
well, the neonic way of treating crops is not even in the same ballpark. It is
being put down no matter what — whether it needs it or not. Foliar applications
of sprays — they do use an IPM and there is communication there. Everything in
my personal situation has gone really well with farmers when they have to use
foliar sprays. But it is not even the same ballpark as neonics, which are going
down no matter what.
Senator Mercer: Mr. Chapleau, you mentioned surface water, and I just
want to clarify that's surface water on the plant, not on the surface of ground
water. It's the surface water that bees would contact as they pollinate.
Mr. Chapleau: I was talking about the surface water on the ground.
Senator Mercer: Oh, on the ground?
Mr. Chapleau: Yes. The puddles contain neonicotinoids at variable
levels. You must understand that the coating on the seed dissolves when it is on
the ground. Between 1 per cent and 20 per cent is absorbed by the plant, so the
rest spreads on the ground. Since it remains in the soil for a long time, it
will be there for years and will flow with the water. When important rains
arrive, it will come to the top and bring toxicities to the bees drinking that
Senator Mercer: Thank you very much. I had the totally wrong
impression. That was very helpful.
We all know about the European Union suspension for two years of the use of
neonicotinoids, and we're into year one. Should we just wait until we find out
what happens after two years of not using neonicotinoids? They've been affected
by significant bee losses as well. They might discover that it's not necessarily
just the neonicotinoids but there could be other environmental factors, such as
climate change, et cetera.
Mr. Davidson: We can look to Italy for that one. Italy banned
neonicotinoids on corn in 2008. The beekeeping loss has leveled off. In other
words, it didn't get any worse, like we're seeing here. The farmers actually
didn't see a significant yield reduction in their corn production either, so
it's kind of a win-win situation, I would think. As far as waiting for the two
years to be up, I personally think there's enough research and science that we
don't need to wait that long.
Senator Mercer: Mr. Chapleau?
Mr. Chapleau: In my opinion, there is an emergency situation. The
situation in the West is not the same as it is in the East. Of course, I don't
know well what is going on in the West. I don't know canola, what dosages are
used or what the rotations are. I know that in Quebec, in many cases corn is
treated with high doses, and the next year soy is also treated with
neonicotinoids and then we go back to corn again. We are facing a problem that
is building and, in my opinion, will get worse.
I repeat: This is not a bee problem; this is a much wider problem.
Senator Mercer: Thank you.
Senator Rivard: We have been discussing this topic for a few months. A
few weeks ago, a witness from a province west of Quebec told us about a local
insurance program for beehives. The witness said that, given the prohibitive
cost of the insurance, very few people were buying it.
I cannot recall seeing in anyone's presentation the average lifespan of a
worker or queen bee. Do they have shorter lifespans than they used to, in light
of all the problems?
Mr. Chapleau: You mentioned several things in your question. Are you
talking about insurance against the loss of hives?
Senator Rivard: For the loss of a hive.
Mr. Chapleau: That is a different question than the one about the
lifespans of worker and queen bees.
Senator Rivard: All the witnesses we heard from talked about the
health issues, but no one's presentation ever mentioned what the average
lifespan of a worker or queen bee was. They are said to be different.
Mr. Chapleau: Yes, they are different.
Senator Rivard: This is a difficult time for bees right now. Did they
used to live two or three times longer than they do now?
Mr. Chapleau: The normal lifespan of a worker bee is 45 days during
the season. In winter, it lives much longer, five or six months, because its
activity level, as a nurse bee or field bee, shortens its lifespan. Under normal
conditions, a queen bee can easily live up to two or three years, sometimes even
One of the chronic effects of neonicotinoids is shorter lifespans. I touched
on it, but what we are seeing is shorter life expectancies for larvae and
Senator Buth: Thank you very much for being here this evening.
Mr. Davidson, can you comment in general on bee management in Ontario? We've
heard from other beekeepers across the country about the struggles with varroa
mite. Maybe you can comment on some of the products you use in your hives.
Mr. Davidson: The varroa mites basically wiped out most of the bad
beekeepers in Ontario in the mid-1990s when they came here. It is very difficult
to keep bees with varroa mites without having almost perfect mite-killing tools.
We use strips as the most effective solution. The strips contain a pesticide and
are placed between the combs of the beehives. The pesticide will kill the mites
but not the bees.
There are a number of different management techniques that a lot of
beekeepers in Ontario use, such as reproducing bees, selling nucs and selling
hives. I use strips only every year and a half. I try to use them as little as
possible — kind of back to the IPM thing.
It's worth noting, and ties into your question and the question before, that
we've always lost bees. Before we had other problems, we had only the winter to
deal with in Ontario, and the average loss was between 5 per cent and 10 per
cent. Then we got varroa mites in the mid-1990s. From then to 2007 our losses
averaged 18 per cent. Then the use of systemic insecticides came along, and from
2007 until now, our losses are at least 30 per cent, depending on how this year
pans out. It does seem to be getting worse. The easiest way for everyone to
understand is that it's not just neonicotinoids killing bees; and no one is
trying to say that. However, it's definitely making it harder and it's the one
thing that beekeepers can't control, as Mr. Chapleau mentioned.
Mr. Chapleau: There is a connection to consider between neonics and
varroa, and between neonics and winter losses more generally speaking.
A certain number of studies have brought to light the problems that neonics
cause to bees' immune systems. A study was just completed in Quebec, and I have
the final report, which just came out. It shows a higher prevalence of viruses
when bees are exposed to even small quantities of neonics. There is also a
higher prevalence of varroa. That is relatively new information. As far as I
know, none of the scientific literature so far has talked about that. It had
only been mentioned as a possibility given bees' ability to thermoregulate.
Bees keep their brood nest warm. In other words, they sit on their young.
Because of the heat they apply to the brood nest, it takes 21 days for a bee to
hatch. Neonics affect their ability to thermoregulate, so it often takes more
than 21 days for them to hatch. And that encourages the growth of varroa
populations, which grow in brood cells.
Neonics affect bees' ability to thermoregulate, so it takes longer than 21
days for them to hatch. That encourages the growth of varroa populations, which
grow in brood cells. And because brood cells take longer before hatching, female
varroa are able to reproduce more in those cells. That is a plausible
explanation and should be considered in relation to what previous witnesses have
told you, Rob Currie, in particular. He said that an unexplained increase in
winter losses had been noted in the past ten or so years. So this is something
worth looking into. Even though beekeepers in the Western provinces are not
reporting any problems with neonics, to my knowledge, they have not checked the
immune systems of their bees and the potential link between neonics exposure and
their abnormal winter losses.
Senator Buth: Mr. Chapleau, you're quite focused on the neonics and
some of the sublethal effects. I've gone back and looked at some of the
watershed reports that show that neonics affect bees. One of the things that
struck me is that they're exposing the bees in ways they don't get exposed to
naturally. So a bee goes out into a field and might get exposed through water,
nectar or pollen, and yet some of the studies have been applying the neonics
directly to the bees at fairly high rates. I understand they're looking for
But going back and looking at what Dr. Cutler said — someone who is actually
doing some of the studies on bees — and when you look at the levels in canola,
he commented that they were finding levels at around three parts per billion in
canola, which is extremely small, and in nectar about one part per billion. Yet
the no-effect level for bees is 20 parts per billion. What I'm getting at is
that it's the dose that makes the poison. I would like you to comment on that.
Mr. Chapleau: That was true.
There is a 500-year old saying that goes ``the dose makes the poison.''
Paracelse said it. Now we have proof that the dose does not make the poison, as
in the case of certain pollutants such as hormone disrupting chemicals, among
other things. If the wrong molecule is in the wrong place at the wrong time, it
can cause a miscarriage, for example, because the molecule disturbs the
processes. With a poisoning, the effects are gradual, unlike in the case of a
Senator Buth: But even for sublethal effects, there is still a dose
that is relevant.
Mr. Chapleau: Yes, there is still a link, but we are noticing that
neonics have an effect at very low doses, and immunosuppression disruption
occurs at very low doses. Neonics interrupt the connections between the neurons
in the brain. We can lose a few neurons and still be able to talk and function,
but we are a bit less intelligent and a bit less able to perform routine tasks.
And the same goes for bees. That is the whole debate, and pesticide makers are
really honing in on that. They are pushing for field studies. When a finding is
proven in a lab setting, they reject it.
I do not understand where that requirement comes from, where the idea emerged
that if something proven in the lab is not verified out in the field, it is not
valid. It is much harder to conduct similar tests in the field because of all
the factors interacting with one another and the complexity that the environment
presents in terms of research protocols. Normally, established protocols involve
plots that are too small and an insufficient number of hives. Not to mention,
our bees forage in an area that spans 1,000 hectares, not 4 hectares, as per the
protocol. That is the protocol Bayer is using to prove that neonics are not
harmful to foraging.
They place 5 hives in front of 4 hectares of canola fields, and use bees that
forage throughout hundreds of other hectares. To give you an idea of how
scientific statistics work, when you have just 5 hives, you need a lot of major
problems to find a significant difference between treatments.
Look at how drugs are developed, in a lab first. Researchers would never say
that, even though drug X was found to cause health problems and side effects,
they were going to try it in the real world. All testing would stop at that
We have to apply the same thinking to bees. Start with laboratory studies.
And if they show a problem with doses that correspond to natural exposure
levels, then, I think that is enough. We have a clear problem that could be
affected by other factors, but we have a clear problem.
Senator Buth: I appreciate that, but I would just comment that in
terms of regulations of pesticides in Canada and around the world, they do take
a look at lab and field studies. I agree with you there: I think both are very
Mr. Davidson: When they were going through all the different studies
they used in Europe, someone sorted through the science. They did find 4 per
cent of the studies that said they were safe for bees. I believe those were done
by the manufacturers of the insecticides.
The ``three parts per billion'' always gets me because, if you look in the
regulatory document, the lethal dose for honeybees — the LD50, clothianidin — is
3.68 parts per billion orally. Those you quoted were for the dermal doses. The
problem is that it's getting into the food, the nectar and pollen, of the bees,
so it only takes 3.68 parts per billion. Bees weigh 100 nanograms, so I believe
36 parts per billion is the lethal dose orally, but they found close to that
this year in corn pollen in Ontario. You have to keep in mind that it does not
take much to kill bees with these compounds.
Senator Maltais: Mr. Chapleau, welcome. Thank you for making the trip
to share your expertise with us. Rest assured, I am not a scientist, just
someone concerned about the cause. In Canada, there are no such things as big or
small causes, only causes. And this cause is honey, which is, after all, a
$2.5-billion business in Canada. So it is a very important cause, especially
since it often serves to supplement farmers' incomes. Therefore, it is essential
that the government consider the issue.
You said something in your presentation that struck me: pesticides are not
needed all the time. Unfortunately, manufacturers and vendors have convinced
farmers they need to use pesticides from May through August. As you so aptly
pointed out, if small doses of pesticides were applied once a year, bees might
be in better shape, but the manufacturers and vendors have convinced farmers
they need pesticides the entire time. And as a result, the fields where bees do
their foraging are being affected right across the country. We heard from
witnesses from Saguenay-Lac- Saint-Jean who told us the situation was not quite
as serious in their region — I am from the North Shore, in Quebec, where we have
a lot of blueberry fields, more than in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, they say now —
and that they do not have the problem yet. I am not sure whether it has to do
with the climate or whether the bacteria has not been able to make it there.
Basically up north, there is little else besides blueberries.
What is a bee's foraging range in relation to its hive?
Mr. Chapleau: The bulk of a hive's foraging, if surrounding resources
are in good supply, happens within a kilometre or two.
If resources are a bit scarce, if conditions for nectar secretion are not
great, if there are not quite enough flowers or if soil quality is poor, the bee
may travel farther to find the flowers it needs. It can travel up to 8 or 9
kilometres, especially if it finds a highly rewarding crop such as raspberries,
which are an abundant source of nectar rich in sugar. Bees will travel a number
of kilometres to forage raspberries.
Senator Maltais: If this is harming bees and if, as Mr. Davidson said,
we are talking about a significant percentage of deaths or bee losses, when will
we see these effects in humans?
Mr. Chapleau: We are just beginning to see scientific findings in that
regard. A Japanese study shows that mammals' brains react to neonics. Research
on mice has shown delayed brain development among mammals. What we know is more
theory-based, and when I say that, I am referring to a presentation we were
given by a pesticide specialist in Quebec, from the ministry of agriculture,
For some, neonics have demonstrated a carcinogenic potential as well as a
potential for endocrine disruption. It is a matter of exposure. And since we
have not measured the changes or effects associated with the wide-scale use and
application of systemic insecticides, we have not done that assessment for
An important thing to note is that the presence of insecticides in food used
to be considered accidental. Going forward, the pesticide is in the food. Its
presence is no longer an accident. It is always present in the food. So we work
with what we call MRLs or maximum residue limits. How are they set? Using only
the manufacturer's data. So some questions need to be asked.
Today, neonics are applied to just about all fruits and vegetables, almonds,
grains, practically everything. I think we need to do some digging in that
respect if we want any reassurance.
Senator Maltais: At the very beginning of the committee's study, we
heard from three leading experts from the departments of health and agriculture.
We had more doctors here than are found in some Quebec hospitals.
Mr. Chapleau: That is why you are so knowledgeable now.
Senator Maltais: I asked them who the biggest consumer of blueberries
was, especially in Eastern Canada, which includes north, east and west Quebec
and the Maritimes. I told them it was the black bear. A lot of people laughed at
Two weeks later, an eminent professor from Dalhousie University said that
black bears were experiencing health problems and that they might even extend
all the way to the polar bear. I am not sure how they can deal with that. My
question was relevant, because the biggest consumer of blueberries in northern
Quebec is the bear. If this is having an effect on animals, perhaps it will have
an effect on humans one day. The alarm is eventually going to sound to protect
human health. This is extremely important in terms of our future.
Mr. Chapleau: I have not seen the information you mentioned about
bears. I might be surprised if neonics had any effect on bears.
Senator Maltais: It came from an eminent Dalhousie University
The Chair: No answer, then.
Did you want to add anything, Mr. Davidson?
Mr. Davidson: Yes. I just need one minute.
With respect to how neonics affect humans, obviously we're a lot bigger than
bees, but we start out smaller. I think there's something to be said about the
development of embryos and whatnot.
Japan has done the most work on this. They just turned back a load of
buckwheat from Manitoba because it tested too high for neonics. The particular
field it came from apparently didn't have treatment on it for two years, so that
tells you a little bit about how persistent these insecticides are.
Senator Ogilvie: Mr. Davidson, what percentage of the beekeepers in
your organization also harvest the nectar from their hives as opposed to just
using them for pollination?
Mr. Davidson: The percentage is very high. I think there's only one
that doesn't extract any honey, so 1 out of 3,000.
Senator Ogilvie: In Ontario, you're not aware of any serious beekeeper
production or number of hives that on an annual basis wouldn't have nectar
removed from them?
Mr. Davidson: No, there's not a big proportion. I mean, bees are going
to make honey no matter what. You can't stop them. If there's nectar, they're
going to make honey out of it. What that beekeeper does is make bees out of the
honey. He divides the hives; whenever they get full, he takes the bees and makes
Senator Ogilvie: In those cases, has there been any observation about
the annual loss of bees for those producers who raise purely for bees as opposed
to deliberately removing nectar for exterior production?
Mr. Davidson: As I mentioned earlier, it is a tool to rapidly produce
bees by breaking colonies in half to expand them. That's a good tool for keeping
the varroa mite at bay.
Those beekeepers still observe the effects of neonics on their bees. It's not
something that you're going to avoid. Sure, it's going to help with the varroa,
but it's not going to help with the systemic insecticides.
Senator Ogilvie: You're saying they're seeing the same losses in the
same weather conditions that the other beekeepers are seeing?
Mr. Davidson: Yes. Their percentages of winter loss will be a little
lower because their varroa mites are always kept low, but there's still the
effect of the neonics there. Does that make sense?
Senator Ogilvie: I understand what you're saying. I'm willing to
entertain that there might be additional factors.
What I'm trying to get at is that bees didn't start an industrial society
where they decided to produce nectar for human consumption; it is for their own
maintenance, survival, reproduction and defence of their colonies and so on. So
my question is around the possibility that the deliberate removal of nectar from
a thriving colony could reduce its viability.
Mr. Davidson: As beekeepers, we take all their honey and then before
winter, we feed them back —
Senator Ogilvie: I understand that part, but they don't do that.
I don't think I'm going to get any further with this, so I've asked my
question and you've responded. I was just explaining why I was asking the
question, to see whether there's any impact on the viability of a colony through
the deliberate human removal of nectar as opposed to simply leaving the colony
alone and managing it on that basis.
You referred to losses in wild population in your comments. Have there been
deliberate or systematic observations of the decline of wild pollinators in the
same time period?
Mr. Davidson: In Ontario, we bring our bees to a lot of different
farms. This past spring, a couple of local guys that grow highbush blueberries
both told me to bring more beehives because they didn't see any native
pollinators. I don't know if there is anyone out there counting, but that's all
part of this. No one is paying attention to a lot of other things out there.
Beekeepers are paying attention to bees because they're trying to make a
living off of them. It was brought up in one of our meetings that you used to
fill up your vehicle with fuel and scrape the bugs off your windshield, but we
don't do that anymore.
Senator Ogilvie: You answered the question. I just wondered whether
there was any deliberate analysis, but it is observational information.
Mr. Davidson, my final question is has there been any significant changes in
the way beekeepers manage their hives in the last 10 years?
Mr. Davidson: I wouldn't say any significant changes. Beekeeping
hasn't changed a lot in over a hundred years, really, or more.
Senator Ogilvie: Mr. Chapleau, you were very knowledgeable with regard
to the detailed studies, and you referred to a number of detailed studies. If I
recall correctly, we were told by previous witnesses that prior to the neonics,
there were insecticides being used and that they have been used for decades. We
were also told some of those are highly toxic, in studies, in comparison to
neonics. Do you have an explanation with regard to the studies that you are
referring to as to why the neonics, supposedly a milder insecticide in general
issues, have suddenly caused this problem?
I know you referred to how it affects the neurons in the insect, but do you
have any observation yourself based on what you have been looking at in terms of
the studies as to why the neonics are causing so much trouble relative to
compounds that were supposedly much more toxic?
Mr. Chapleau: Overexposure. They're all over, and the exposure extends
over the whole season, compared to a very short exposure with traditional
pesticides in the past.
But I am not sure that neonics are less toxic. We have a database in Quebec
on pesticides, and the database says that neonics are highly toxic to bees.
Senator Ogilvie: I used the wrong terminology. I should have said
that, in fact, they may well be more toxic because they can be used in
presumably smaller doses in certain cases.
The point you are making is that they're present during a much longer period
Mr. Chapleau: More acres and a longer period of exposure.
Senator Ogilvie: That refers back to the way you said they used to be
applied, and there would be a dosage and then they would be gone.
Mr. Chapleau: We always lived with insecticides before that.
Senator Ogilvie: You both have been informative. Thank you very much.
Senator Eaton: You two seem to be real experts. How long has it been
since people started keeping statistics on how bees have been surviving? Why the
loss in bees every year? How long has it been? Ten years? Twenty years? Thirty
I'm just trying to think is this a recent thing? Has this been done for the
Mr. Chapleau: Speaking for Quebec, I would say that we have annual
statistics on winter loss, only on winter losses.
Senator Eaton: For how many years?
Mr. Chapleau: I would say about 25 years.
Senator Eaton: Winter hasn't changed that much in this country.
Wouldn't you have thought that the statistics would have been fairly — I mean a
hundred years ago they must have had winter loss.
Mr. Chapleau: We have some figures for previous years, but there was
no survey every year on the winter losses. We have some references that go back
to the 1940s and that period, too.
Senator Eaton: Were there varroa mites in 1940?
Mr. Chapleau: No. The varroa arrived — when was that?
Mr. Davidson: Mid-1990s in Ontario.
Senator Eaton: What do you think brought on the varroa mite?
Mr. Davidson: The global village we live in. ``Invasives'' are getting
Senator Eaton: You said to Senator Ogilvie there have been no
significant changes in beekeeping in a hundred years. However, if one looks at
agriculture and the intensity of cropping now, and the lack of biodiversity that
you have both talked about, has that promoted a conversation amongst yourselves
about how beekeeping should be changed or adapted to this mono-cropping and lack
We have heard from farmers and beekeepers about what they're trying to do to
have strips of wilder grass down each field. We have heard about looking at new
things, and I haven't heard that from either of you; so I just find it
Mr. Davidson: That's something that beekeepers do and have done
forever as well. When we go and pick a bee yard, there's a lot of thought that
goes into where we put our bees. We try and stay away from corn, because we know
corn is not good for bees. It produces no nectar; it is not good at all for us.
We have been doing that forever, trying to pick the best areas for bees,
areas that have a larger diversity of plants, some shrubs, some forests. Maybe
someone has horses and needs a hayfield. We have been doing that forever to try
to pick out the best spots.
Senator Eaton: If you took neonics out of the equation, what
percentage of bee loss do you think you would still have?
Mr. Davidson: Like you say, we have always had winter; winter hasn't
changed that much. Over the winter, before we had mites and before we had
systemic insecticides, we lost between 5 and 10 per cent of the bees in Ontario.
When we got mites, it increased it by quite a bit. We averaged 18 per cent
with just the mites to deal with. And the winter, I guess. Combine the winter
and the mites and now we're over 30 per cent.
So the neonics, if you just go by those rough numbers, increased over winter
Senator Eaton: By another 10 or 12 per cent?
Mr. Davidson: Yes. So it would probably go back to that 18 per cent.
Senator Eaton: That's consistent every year?
Mr. Davidson: No. It goes up and down. When we had winter and mites,
it did as well. That's the average over all those years.
Everyone here really seems to be looking at what's different, what's changed,
and you don't have to really look further than what these insecticides do.
They're systemic. They're getting into the bees' food; that's the difference.
What would we do if we had to cuddle up and make it through a winter eating
Senator Eaton: We're very interested because we have talked to other
jurisdictions where neonics are not a factor.
Mr. Davidson: There's some politics involved in that, I believe.
Senator Eaton: Politics is everywhere.
Mr. Davidson: Yes.
Senator Oh: It seems that there's no consensus in the scientific
community about the possible link between neonics and bee mortality. The
European Food Safety Authority and the U.S. authority believe there's a link
between neonics and bee mortality, but the U.K. has a government agency that
thinks they're not related.
Has any other country imposed regulatory controls on the use of insecticides
Mr. Chapleau: I'm not sure of the last sentence.
Senator Oh: Does any country impose a complete ban on this insecticide
Mr. Davidson: I don't think any country has completely banned neonics.
The European Union banned them on corn, soybeans and canola, I believe. Back in
2008, Italy banned neonics on corn. I think France did so too at some time in
between, but I don't know exactly.
Senator Oh: That means the world scientific community has conflicting
views — there's no consensus on what is happening.
Mr. Davidson: I really don't know if it has a lot to do with the
science. I think we get back to politics there.
Mr. Chapleau: If you look at the meta-analyses that have been done on
the subject, you will see the consensus. A consensus is lacking when it comes to
the regulatory authorities and the political realm. I will tell you that the
only conflicting opinions in terms of the science flow from the research done by
Senator Dagenais: I want to thank both our witnesses.
My first question is for Mr. Chapleau. I have listened to you carefully, and
I gather that you take an integrated approach based on the philosophy of
In your view, what is the best way to tackle the illnesses plaguing bees and
what should our outlook be? Much has been said about the past, but we also need
to consider the future.
Mr. Chapleau: If we only discuss the diseases, leaving aside the
potential links with other aggravating factors such as pesticide, the knowledge
is there to do a good job of dealing with those diseases. What may be missing in
some cases, however, is the technology transfer, so the support programs to help
Monitoring varroa is imperative. Detection is key and needs to be undertaken
within very specific time frames, and thresholds have to be monitored. That
would be a truly integrated approach, which everyone should adopt, and action
should be taken once the thresholds are reached. The situation is unforgiving.
If we do not do it, then we are taking a risk; sometimes, we are lucky and it is
okay, and other times, the losses are huge. Some producers have failed to adopt
an integrated approach that is sound. Someone mentioned that beekeeping had to
adapt; beekeeping has not quite finished adapting to the reality of varroa. Our
big players are having some trouble managing varroa, which needs to be monitored
very carefully. There is no denying that varroa is a problem and that varroa
alone is causing losses in regions in Quebec where pesticides are not used. We
are also seeing abnormal losses.
Senator Dagenais: I have one last quick question for Mr. Davidson. If
the federal government had to choose one research priority, what should it be?
Mr. Davidson: Do you mean a priority for bee health research?
Senator Dagenais: Yes, exactly. We talked about the whole issue of
technical research; I imagine there is one priority that we should focus on.
That is why we are here today, for that matter. I would like to hear your
thoughts on the subject.
Mr. Davidson: Yes, but taking pesticides out of it, I really don't
know. I think Mr. Chapleau hinted at that. We don't know the synergy between
neonics and some of the other problems we have, so maybe that would be an area
I really like your question to Mr. Chapleau, looking forward, because I
always try to do that too. Beekeepers are very good at figuring stuff out. The
stuff that they can figure out they're very good at figuring out. They trade
secrets and things like that to figure that stuff out.
There are gaps and things we don't know. In our observations, although we're
pretty sure we don't know if neonics make varroa mites worse and we don't know
if neonics make viruses worse — maybe just some concrete proof that they are
Senator Dagenais: Mr. Chapleau, do you have anything to add?
Mr. Chapleau: There is a strong link between beekeeping and farming.
The pesticide dimension shows us just how significant that link can be. Senator
Eaton asked about how beekeeping was adapting to the new farming realities.
Major changes in farming are having effects such as the crop concentration and
the decrease in crop diversity.
Senator Eaton: Demand too.
Mr. Chapleau: Yes. The question can be framed in terms of what
beekeepers are doing to adapt, but also in terms of whether our farming
practices are changing in a sustainable way. Biodiversity is what comes to mind.
The importance of biodiversity is recognized, and yes, we are adapting; we are
leaving those areas where our bees can no longer survive. But is it normal for
beekeeping to flee from farming? That is my question to you.
Senator Buth: I want to go back to the fact that you might think we're
backing off in terms of listening to you about the pesticide issue, but the
study we're doing essentially is on bee health. We're hearing from witnesses
from all different aspects, including some of the native pollinator studies that
have been done out of the U.S.
I want to go back to the issue about the acute poisonings that you have seen
in bees with the neonics. We have heard that the U.S. has not been having these
kinds of problems. I'm wondering if you are aware of that as well. They plant
millions and millions of acres of corn. Have you heard of issues in the U.S.?
Mr. Davidson: Yes, there definitely have been issues in the U.S. The
beekeepers in the U.S. are a little afraid of reporting these incidents because
they use off-label treatments in their hives. They're afraid they'll get in
trouble for that, so they don't call.
Beekeepers in the States have the ability to go to Florida to overwinter
their bees. When their bees are down in Florida not making honey or pollinating
crops, some of the bigger beekeepers are replacing 100 per cent of their comb to
get rid of the insecticide. Beekeepers in the U.S. know exactly what is going
on. They have the ability to try and winter in a very southern climate.
Senator Buth: We asked this of some of the other beekeeper
organizations: How are you funded? Do you have a levy? What types of things do
you fund with the money you bring in?
Mr. Davidson: We get a grant from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture
and Food. We also charge a levy. We have a technology transfer program that the
majority of the OMAF money goes to. They do practical research and try to
transfer that to the beekeeping community.
Senator Buth: What would your levy be? Is that on a hive-per-hive
Mr. Davidson: Yes, it's on a hive basis, with a maximum. If you have X
number of hives, you don't pay any more after that.
Senator Buth: Do you know how much it is per hive?
Mr. Davidson: I should know, shouldn't I?
Senator Buth: You just pay the bill.
Mr. Davidson: Yes.
Senator Buth: And in Quebec, Mr. Chapleau?
Mr. Chapleau: In Quebec, we do not have a levy plan, and there is no
joint plan. Despite our efforts to put one in place, we have never been able to
get to the voting stage. So we have voluntary membership fees paid by the
producers to the Fédération des apiculteurs du Québec. And we receive $66,000 in
government assistance a year. So, on the whole, the budget is limited.
Senator Buth: One more question. Mr. Davidson, how closely are you
working with the Ontario Bee Health Working Group that's looking at this issue?
Mr. Davidson: I missed one meeting, but I have been involved with that
process quite closely.
Senator Ogilvie: Mr. Davidson, you implied that we were looking at
certain aspects of this very closely, and we are. You all have a vested
interest. In your last comments about Americans, you showed why we should be
skeptical — or questioning, at least — of all the answers we get from all of the
parties involved; namely because this is a very serious issue.
You gave a curious response, I thought, to the question about the differences
experienced in the West and in the East. You said there are political issues
involved. Were you implying that the results we have been given are not
Mr. Davidson: There are a couple of differences, but the companies
that manufacture these products have a lot of different interests, and there's a
Senator Ogilvie: But the results we were getting were from the
producers, and they were telling us that their observations in terms of the
success of their hives over the winter are different than yours with regard to
the impact of neonics. That was the question asked, and the answer you gave was
that there are political issues involved. Were you implying that the producers
in the West gave us information that is not accurate with regard to the impacts
on their hives?
Mr. Davidson: I sure hope they wouldn't do that, but I will say that a
few of them do pollinate hybrid canola for the same companies that produce these
Another difference is that — and don't quote me on these numbers — corn takes
up a higher percentage of these insecticides than canola, from what I
understand. So you combine that with a lower dose, and then it could very well
be. I don't keep bees in the Prairies, and we should be able to trust what
they're telling you senators.
Senator Ogilvie: With regard to the issue, they did make it very clear
that there is a considerable difference in terms of the dose used and the way in
which it is applied, the shape of the seed, the nature of seeding and all of
We are asking all these questions, Mr. Davidson, because we will eventually
write a report, and we want to be able to understand the significance of all the
comments made to us.
The Chair: Before we leave, senators, we have received from Mr.
Davidson information on his industry.
Mr. Davidson: Yes, it is just research and a few resources for you to
have if you need while you are going through your study.
The Chair: Thank you. Since it is only in one official language, I
would ask if I have a consensus to distribute it.
Hon. Senators: Yes.
The Chair: Thank you.
Mr. Chapleau and Mr. Davidson, thank you for sharing your opinions, your
vision and also your recommendations with us. The committee appreciates them.
(The committee adjourned.)