Latvia's beehive numbers are buzzing

In 2020, there were more than 100,000 beehives on Latvian farms, according to Eurostat data published May 19, though the total number of beehives in the country is likely to be much higher – the Agricultural Census only records beehives on farms and not those kept by private apiarists.  

To be precise Latvia accounted for 104,000 beehives on farms from an EU-wide total of 8.1 million beehives on EU farms – an important chunk of the total. The number is an increase on the 89,490 beehives recorded in 2016, and just 25,890 recorded in 2010 suggesting that business in booming for these buzzing Baltic bees.

Behives on farms, 2020
Behives on farms, 2020

At national level, Romania had 1.5 million beehives on farms, Italy and Greece each accounted for a further 1 million beehives on farms, with Spain (0.9 million beehives), Bulgaria (0.9 million) and Portugal (0.7 million) having the next highest.

Bees are kept throughout the EU; they pollinate a wide range of crops that are grown in warmer and colder climes. They are able to survive colder climates such as Latvia's by overwintering in their hives, using up honey reserves.

The highest number of beehives on farms in any one region was found in the Spanish region of Extremadura (300 220), followed by the Portuguese region of Norte (257 040). The Romanian region of Nord-Vest (250 510) registered the third-largest number. 

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