11/01/2012 05:28 EDT | Updated 01/01/2013 05:12 EST

Nova Scotia legislation would set up fees for inspection of imported bees

HALIFAX - The Nova Scotia government wants to make it easier for bees to be imported to the province.

Agriculture Minister John MacDonell says fruit producers are telling him they need more bees to pollinate their crops.

MacDonell says changes to the Bee Industry Act will allow his department to collect fees to cover the cost of increasing the number of inspections required for imported beehives.

The inspections ensure the hives are free of pests and contain healthy bee populations.

A department official says the fees won't be determined until the legislative amendment is passed.

Last spring, the province spent $2,600 to inspect all of the bees that were imported, most of which came from Ontario.