The preservation of the biodiversity of bees is now an object of global attention.

Besides the honey that some species produce, what is at stake is the significant environmental service that bees provide through pollination, the key stage of the reproductive process of plants. It is the pollination that enables the development of seeds and fruits, benefiting natural ecosystems, crops and, consequently, food production. It is estimated that bees are responsible, directly or indirectly, for over one third of our global food supply.

What a great part of the population does not know is that the yellow and black striped bee, the one that is feared because of its sting – Apis mellifera or the ‘honey bee’ – is only one of the 20 thousand species of bees in the planet today. In Brazil alone there are approximately 1,200.

In this exhibition we highlight stingless bees, or meliponines. A special group that is native to tropical regions, and of which there approximately 250 species present in Brazil today. Besides not having stingers, they produce a different type of honey, one with greater acidity and beautiful nuances of scents and flavors.

Meliponiculture is an activity historically developed by traditional communities from Brazil and other Latin American countries. Predominantly artisanal and attached to subsistence, it has gained space in a market that now appreciates products of territorial origins.

Since its foundation, Instituto ATÁ has been working to support meliponiculture. Incentivizing the development of research on the subject, and advertising and experimenting with the gastronomic possibilities of its resulting products. This has been done in order to boost demand and sensitize the public authorities to the proper regulation of the production chain.

Jerônimo Villas-Bôas e Alex Atala


Instituto ATA
Nongovernmental organization whose goal is to value ingredients, producers and the production territories of Brazil.

Social enterprise whose goals are to make certain production chains viable, and add value to products that come from Brazilian socio-biodiversity. It supports meliponiculture initiatives from several regions of the country.

SOS Abelhas sem Ferrão
Nongovernmental organization that deals with environmental education, bringing awareness to the importance of bees, their proper management and preservation.