Bee rental costs may be to blame for the price of produce these days. Since honeybees started mysteriously disappearing, growers of products like pumpkins, cucumbers, and almonds have been forced to rent bees by the colony in order to pollinate their crops. Most crops require one to two beehives per acre, and each hive now costs somewhere between $10 and $180, depending on the season and the grower's intended use for the bees—a burden which is passed on to the consumer in the form of higher food prices. Not only is this a significant cost, but with scientists still perplexed as to the cause of the bee blight, there's no readily apparent solution to the problem of higher bee fees. At least the House Committee on Agriculture met on Thursday to discuss the issue—a small comfort, but it's a start.

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