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Nature. 2002 Jun 13;417(6890):708.

The value of bees to the coffee harvest.

Author information

1
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, 34002-0948, USA. roubikd@tivoli.si.edu

Abstract

The self-pollinating African shrub Coffea arabica, a pillar of tropical agriculture, was considered to gain nothing from insect pollinators. But I show here that naturalized, non-native honeybees can augment pollination and boost crop yields by over 50%. These findings, together with world coffee-harvest statistics and results from field studies of organically shade-grown coffee, indicate that coffee plants would benefit from being grown in habitats that are suitable for sustaining valuable pollinators.

PMID:
12066176
DOI:
10.1038/417708a
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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