The self-pollinating African shrub Coffea arabica, a pillar of tropical agriculture, was considered to gain nothing from insect pollinators1,2. But I show here that naturalized, non-native honeybees can augment pollination and boost crop yields by over 50%. These findings, together with world coffee-harvest statistics and results from field studies of organically shade-grown coffee, indicate that coffee plants would benefit from being grown in habitats that are suitable for sustaining valuable pollinators.
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