The Bee Nutrition Challenge: An Innovation Award

Courtesy of

Calling all honey bee and animal nutrition enthusiasts!

The Honey Bee Health Coalition is excited to announce the launch of the 2017 Bee Nutrition Challenge: An Innovation Award.

The Problem
Our honey bees are in trouble, partly because they don’t have enough to eat. Thanks to researchers, we’ve learned a lot about the nutrients bees need in order to thrive. However, there’s a lot we still don’t understand about the best diet to keep bees happy and healthy. Bees are facing greater and greater challenges from land use, agricultural, and ecological forces that make it tough for bees to find their own meals. That’s where you come in.

The Competition
Making a difference can start with one bold idea. The Honey Bee Health Coalition is looking for creative, practical solutions to accelerate and pioneer the field of honey bee nutrition. We want to hear from folks within the community and newcomers to the bee world – no beekeeping or research experience required!

You’re invited to submit your most innovative project idea to tackle honey bee nutrition challenges, for the chance to win prize money to implement your project. Competition finalists will be flown to the 2018 American Bee Research Conference in Reno, NV to present their ideas to a panel of judges in a “Shark Tank”-style showdown. Finalists will have the opportunity to network with hundreds of bee industry experts and join a passionate community working on honey bee health. Competition judges will award a total of $40,000 of prize money to up to four amazing project ideas.

Your idea might be a research project, plans for a new product, or a new system of honey bee feeding no one has ever thought of before. Maybe there’s a honey bee take-out service just waiting to be invented.

Ready to join the next generation of inventors, researchers, entrepreneurs, innovators, and amateur aficionados working to shape the future of honey bee health? Read on to learn how to apply.

The Details

August 1, 2017: The competition opens for submissions. The application is available at the bottom of this webpage

October 6, 2017: Deadline for project submissions

October 25, 2017: Competition finalists are announced

January 11-12, 2018: Competition finalists present their projects to judges at the 2018 American Bee Research Conference

January 12, 2018: Competition winners are awarded 

We’re interested in practical, applied solutions for improving and better understanding honey bee nutrition. Your project might be:

  • A field trial testing a new or existing nutrition supplement
  • A tool to help beekeepers test the efficacy of nutrition supplements
  • A new method to assess key factors in bee nutrition
  • A new bee feeding mechanism
  • Another type of creative project to improve bee health

Need some inspiration? Check out the Honey Bee Health Coalition’s report, Beekeeper Insights on Honey Bee Nutrition Supplements for areas we feel need more exploration.

Project Criteria
Entries must be a project designed to advance the honey bee nutrition field. Applications should address the following:

  • Innovation: How will your project advance the honey bee nutrition industry? What makes your idea unique?
  • Impact: How will your idea make a difference in honey bee health?
  • Feasibility: If your project is chosen as a winner, what’s your plan to implement your idea?


Up to 10 competition finalists will be selected to present their ideas to judges in person at the 2018 American Bee Research Conference in Reno, NV. Travel stipends will be provided to all finalists. Judges will award $40,000 of prize money to up to four competition winners to complete their projects.

Competition winners will present their progress or final project results at the 2019 American Bee Research Conference and a travel stipend will once again be provided.

Download the competition application by clicking here.

The Honey Bee Health Coalition does not retain any rights to the projects submitted to the competition. Monetary awards offered are at the sole discretion of the Honey Bee Health Coalition.