A hot topic just now.
Like many people, we are very concerned by recent scientific papers which have shown evidence of harmful sub-lethal effects on bumblebees (and indeed other bees). On hearing these results, we publicly called for an immediate review of their use, particularly in flowering crops. DEFRA have since indicated that such a review is now underway.
Further, we also called for the risk assessment process by which these chemicals were deemed to be safe to be reviewed, to take into account sub-lethal effects across a range of taxa.
We did not call for an immediate ban on their use. We are concerned to ensure that the chemicals which would be used in their place in the event of a sudden ban are not more harmful than those that they replace. Any action, however rapid, should be considered carefully.
For the avoidance of doubt, we have never received any funding from agri-chemical companies.
Hopefully that clarifies our position, for anyone that might have had reason to wonder.