By Michelle Graff

One idea that popped into my head during Tuesday's eco-luxe event (other than ‘I am a wasteful human being who needs to recycle more’) is that it's probably not a bad time to invest in some socially conscious, lower-price-point pieces to stick by the cash register.

Case in point: a new line called "Let it Bee." 

This line of bee-themed jewelry is attempting to create buzz around an issue that maybe doesn't get as much play as larger environmental issues, such as the plight of the polar bears, but is a big problem just the same: Colony Collapse Disorder, or CCD.

Not to be confused with the awful Catholic version of Sunday school I was forced to attend every Sunday of my young life (thanks, Mom), CCD refers to the unexplained phenomenon of workers bees abandoning their hives, leaving the other bees behind. Without the workers, the hive collapses and the majority of its occupants die off.

What this means, in the long run, is fewer busy bees to pollinate crops, which, in turn, has an effect on the food chain.

Feel like the only thing we'll be missing if honeybees disappear is, well, honey? Consider a 2008 report from Congress that shows that honeybees are the most valuable economic pollinators of crops worldwide, contributing to the production of many fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, forage crops (plants eaten by grazing livestock) and some field crops (plants we eat).

I don't want to turn this jewelry blog into a biology lesson, so if you want more information on CCD, click here, or to download a PDF of the report just mentioned, click here.

In any case, “Let it Bee,” which consists of two distinct collections, features unique designs and is priced very well.

Pieces in the basic “Honey Bee Line” start at $15.99, while the more upscale pieces in the “Colony Culture Collection,” will run customers a max of $160.

Apiary bracelet for bee blog

(The “Apiary” bracelet pictured here is part of the Colony Culture Collection.)

Of course this isn’t fine jewelry (though the line's creator Meg Bryson wouldn't object to crafting a few high-end pieces), but it's cute, the designs are great and I could see the line having mass appeal to a number of age groups, from grandmas to young girls.
So would it be such a crime to place it by the cash register and sell it as an add-on?
It's for a good cause, as 5 percent of the proceeds from each sale goes to the CCD Research Team at Penn State.

Carrying the jewelry helps spread the word about CCD, giving life to the old adage "you learn something new everyday," and conveys a message of being socially responsible to your customers.

This is a line you can carry in good conscience, even if you hate bees because you've been stung too many times.

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