Bee Health Improvement Partnership: annual report 2022 to 2023

This is the first annual report of the activities of the Bee Health Improvement Partnership (BHIP) following the publication of Scotland’s second 10-year Honey Bee Health Strategy in 2022. Its outlines and reflects on the progress made by the BHIP during the first full year of the second Honey Bee Health Strategy.

Conclusion and forward look

During its first full year of a new Strategy and as detailed above, the BHIP have delivered on several of its specific actions and made progress on others, all towards addressing a range of important issues and achieving the desired outcomes for honey bee health in Scotland.

Turning towards 2024, key priorities for the BHIP include:

EFB Control Plan

  • As part of the ongoing work to ensure that the Plan is fit for purpose and signatories can fully comply, the Plan will be reviewed during 2024. The BHIP will look at lessons learned from previous seasons, consider if existing controls are sufficient, and reflect evolving knowledge on EFB spread and control.

Asian hornet

  • As the risk of an Asian hornet incursion in Scotland increases with the steep rise in numbers located in England during the 2023 season, the BHIP has recommended Honey Bee Health inspectors shadow counterparts in the National Bee Unit and Defra during the 2024 season in their response to sightings to gain further experience on how to tackle any incursion into Scotland.
  • The Scottish Government will publish its Asian Hornet Contingency Plan setting out the procedures to respond to a suspected or confirmed incursion of the Asian hornet in Scotland.


  • The BHIP is to roll out a standardised training module in 2024 for local associations to include in their beginner to beekeeping training. This module will inform beekeepers on relevant legislation, notifiable diseases, non-native invasive species, the functions of the Honey Bee Health Team, the role of the Scottish Government Honey Bee inspectors and how to engage, the Veterinary Medicine Directorate and approved medicines etc.
  • A Varroa-specific training module will also be rolled out.
  • A new SRUC web page on honey bee health to be launched

Compulsory Registration

  • Work will begin in 2024 to engage with the sector on the feasibility of and appetite for compulsory registration and reporting of apiary locations.

If you would like to keep up to date with the progress of the work of the BHIP, its implementation plan is updated following every meeting and can be accessed here.



Back to top