Apiarists from around the country have descended on Canberra this week to fight the government's decision to halt its funding of the eradication of the Asian honey bee. Beekeepers are concerned that Apis cerana will not only destroy the bee and honey industry, but that it will also affect the food processing industry, which relies on the pollination of bees.

The campaign -- "Food security needs bee security" -- was sparked after the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestries (DAFF) decided to wind up its $3 million program to eradicate the bee at the end of this month. DAFF officials said that the program had ended because eradication of the Asian bee wasn't feasible.