The truth behind fondants

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Patrick1 

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The first two paragraphs, although one applies to treatments and the second to feeds, appear to display a dichotomy in the approach to knowledge.





By fake news I am meaning that the thread started very much in the style of advertorial, and as such has to be treated with extreme skepticism. There are no references quoted or sources mentioned, which means it all needs to be fact checked as much as may be possible before one can begin to evaluate the veracity of the statements.
The very position of being an advertiser in the forum means that it is very difficult for constructive and informative discussion to occur, without the suspicion of there being a commercial angle that biases posts. I do not think one can really ride two horses.

On the other hand, if it does promote truly independent discussion with verifiable facts from authoritative sources, then it may have some benefit. Personally I am with Pargyle in that I prefer that the only stuff in hives is that which the Bees take in.

Nothing personal...
You just cannot get away from me being a beekeeper and that’s all, I have tried hard not to mention my other interests ( we would be here all day if I told you halve of them) I genuinely want the discussion based on the line I am proffering but people like you make comments to throw others of the scent instead of presenting an fact based argument. It would be acceptable if I was the only person in the UK selling these products but I sadly am not,

I also believe that nothing should go into the hive, with the exception of treatments as required, I occasional feed a syrup.
 

Patrick1 

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Hmm. I had not even thought about YOUR company, I am disappointed that you seem to think it relevant.

You began the thread quoting what I see as a sales pitch from a producer of sugar products highlighting HMF levels, which ended by saying “They are in the same boat as pigbreeders, cowbreeders, chickenfarms …. They all have to use registered feedmixes" but without evidence or explanation and we know that HMF naturally occurs in many food products that contain sugar and a low pH value.

In another post you then suggested feeding bakers fondant is linked bees mortality saying that high HMF feed across the winter could affect the larva and may explain some of the colony over winter losses. You referred to survival rates in another posting and also “the processing from the raw to sugar it could easily have a potentially dangerous to bees level of HMF, unlike the product specifically designed for bees.” but with no evidence or explanation.

You also alluded to the World Trade Organization (WTO) I do not quite understand what they have to do with harmful levels of Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) in honey bees?

The study Effect of hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) on mortality of artificially reared honey bee larvae (Apis mellifera carnica) S Krainer et al. Published 2015 lends some support to your contentions although it concludes (amongst other things)

Under natural conditions, honey stored within the hive will probably less likely develop an HMF concentration as high as the LC50 for larvae as determined in our study. However, it is conceivable, that supplemental food, acid-catalyzed and long-term stored under improper conditions, might reach HMF levels that can cause lethal or, more likely, sublethal damage in a dimension that is not yet known. Indeed, the impact of sublethal HMF intoxication is needed to be investigated, as, especially in combination with other stressors, it is likely to reduce resistance against environmental influences, pesticides, parasites and diseases (Zirbes et al. 2013). We promote the method of rearing larvae in the laboratory for further investigations on that. The comparisons of resistance of immature and adult honey bees towards toxins, a rarely investigated study object, may improve risk assessment or our understanding of poisonous action in general. “
A typo it was the WHO that has reduced the levels of HMF permitted.

Far from a sales pitch I asked several companies that produce bakers fondant and bee feeds to comment specifically HMF in there products, only one came back with a detailed response and I posted that, they make bot bakers fondant and a product designed for bees. The first has high levels of HMF a proven toxin.

The only other company to respond was a UK company whose product I see being sold as bee feed that is labelled bakers fondant, they said they do not measure HMF as the don’t need to for bakers fondant.

No one is suggesting bakers fondant is solely responsible for killing large numbers of bees, it is probably a contributory factor based on even the notes you have quoted you must admit there is concerns.
 

colinlyne 

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"Have you been mis sold mineral fibre suspended acoustic ceiling spray?
If so call 1800 Dodgyspray and we can help you claim"
I would rather think that although out of the statute of limitations, there is still a criminal act of fraud, and that the Police would be interested.
 

Murox 

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A typo it was the WHO that has reduced the levels of HMF permitted.

Far from a sales pitch I asked several companies that produce bakers fondant and bee feeds to comment specifically HMF in there products, only one came back with a detailed response and I posted that, they make bot bakers fondant and a product designed for bees. The first has high levels of HMF a proven toxin.

The only other company to respond was a UK company whose product I see being sold as bee feed that is labelled bakers fondant, they said they do not measure HMF as the don’t need to for bakers fondant.

No one is suggesting bakers fondant is solely responsible for killing large numbers of bees, it is probably a contributory factor based on even the notes you have quoted you must admit there is concerns.
Aah! The W.H.O. Yes. I think perhaps the material you are talking about is contained in the study 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) levels in honey and other food products: effects on bees and human health by Shapla et al. Shapla cites S Krainer's study too.

Whilst Shapla et al provides some useful information it to ends up being inconclusive “the authors (Krainer et al) concluded that HMF used as a supplement in food does compromise colony fitness but may not cause great losses of brood. It is hypothesized that HMF causes bees to experience dysentery-like symptoms and ulcers in the gastrointestinal intestinal tract [18], leading to their death.”

And Shapla et al “As a constituent of processed foods, HMF has both profoundly adverse and beneficial effects on human and bee health. Some effects of HMF on human health and its carcinogenic as well as anti-carcinogenic properties remain inconclusive, with many studies conducted only at preclinical levels.”
HMF effects on honey bee and human health
13065_2018_408_Fig3_HTML.jpg

A slightly more up-to-date study Hydroxymethylfurfural Affects Caged Honey Bees (Apis mellifera carnica) Prof. A Gregorc et al.
Abstract
“A high concentration of hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) (e.g., 15 mg HMF per kg honey) indicates quality deterioration for a wide range of foods. In honey bee colonies, HMF in stored honey can negatively affect bee health and survival. Therefore, in the laboratory, we experimentally determined the effects of HMF on the longevity and midgut integrity of worker Apis mellifera carnica by feeding bees standard diets containing five concentrations of HMF (100, 500, 1000, and 1500 ppm). Simultaneously, we also examined HMF’s effect on Nosema ceranae spore counts within infected honey bees. We performed an immunohistochemical analysis of the honey bee midgut to determine possible changes at the cellular level. No correlation was established between HMF concentration and N. ceranae spore counts. Negative effects of HMF on bees were not observed in the first 15 days of exposure. However, after 15 to 30 days of exposure, HMF caused midgut cells to die and an increased mortality of honey bee workers across treatment groups”.

The study concludes “clearly HMF has a dosage-dependent cytotoxic effect on honey bee digestion; both sublethal and subclinical changes to the midgut occur at the cellular level before bees eventually die from high doses. Adverse effects of HMF feeding needs study at the colony level because bees may rely on unknown behavioral mechanisms to mitigate the toxic effects of HMF-contaminated food stores on bee and brood survival.”
 

pete darbyshire 

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I also believe that nothing should go into the hive, with the exception of treatments as required, I occasional feed a syrup.
What about ultrabee paties, full of corn starch and palm oil? I once stated from experience that my bees would rather starve than eat it. You told me that your bees loved it!!
 

Markthebuilder 

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The company is long gone now so I don't feel particularly concerned about letting the cat out of the bag that our Acoustic Dye was in, in fact, cheap white emulsion paint - whitewash in more than one sense of the word,
I’m so disappointed in this, I was considering becoming a disciple of treatment free but how can I now believe.🧑🏽‍✈️
 

pargyle 

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I’m so disappointed in this, I was considering becoming a disciple of treatment free but how can I now believe.🧑🏽‍✈️
I don't (and never have) told lies .... but the truth can sometimes be obscured by marketing BS ....
 

Frizzaldo 

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I don't (and never have) told lies .... but the truth can sometimes be obscured by marketing BS ....
like being treatment free...unless it is needed?
I jest, I know there is more to it than that
 

Markthebuilder 

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We have a stall at a farmer's market in a holiday town and often get beekeepers from other parts of the uk stopping for a chat and the most common cause of colony loss (particularly among inexperienced beeks) is starvation; a pack of bakers fondant could be lifesaving for those bees regardless of HMF levels.
Very true but why risk the hmf.
My understanding is that it shortens the life expectancy of bees dramatically Though they think that it is not actually the hmf that kills bees but some other chemical associated with hmf that they have yet to fully understand.
Which is a bit like saying asbestos won’t hurt you but asbestosis will.

Winter losses linked to HMF compared to other factors may be quite small say only 5% where as disease could be 40% but that extra 5% may be enough to tip the valence between a colonel that survives and one that doesnt.
I don't (and never have) told lies .... but the truth can sometimes be obscured by marketing BS ....
well in that case so long as you don’t start selling bees that have been specially breed to thrive in a treatment free enviroment I will continue to look forward to reading your posts
 

pargyle 

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well in that case so long as you don’t start selling bees that have been specially breed to thrive in a treatment free enviroment I will continue to look forward to reading your posts
Sadly I could never guarantee that my TF bees would thrive elsewhere so you are quite safe there ...:)
 

Patrick1 

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What about ultrabee paties, full of corn starch and palm oil? I once stated from experience that my bees would rather starve than eat it. You told me that your bees loved it!!
I used it for many years and the bees did take it down in vast quantities, it suits some beekeepers and bees.
 

Ian123 

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What about ultrabee paties, full of corn starch and palm oil? I once stated from experience that my bees would rather starve than eat it. You told me that your bees loved it!!
well your bees would starve, it’s pollen sub not sugar.
 

Patrick1 

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In answer to your comment pete darbyshire.
My beekeeping has changed, for around 17 years I kept reared and bread bees, then I changed, I only really need bees for the pollination so started to purchase Italians, using them for pollination and selling nucs. We only used Syrup for the spring build up they went off like rockets with needing Ultabee.This year we no longer import Italians and reverting to what we do well and going back to what I really enjoy breading and rearing.
Ultrabee is one of the best protein supplements on the market and believe me ( or not) I have imported most of them, the only other one that comes close is Dadants one. We will go back to feeding Ultrabee this year, my bees will get patties on the 1st March with a small thin syrup.
 

elainemary 

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I used it for many years and the bees did take it down in vast quantities, it suits some beekeepers and bees.
Is corn starch safe for bees? Has the product been tested and verified as safe for bees?
 

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I tried ultra bee for the first time last march. One hive gulped it down and did really well on it whilst another in the same apiary just a few meters away used about a half of one patty and carried on as normal. Did no harm, gave the user some reassurance, and the bees definitely got a buzz out of it.
 

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The WTO would disagree about that herring, HMF is extremely harmful to bees.
It IS a red herring. not because hmf is harmless, but because high hmf fondant is not a serious risk. It has to be seriously high to be harmful. Just because a product does not come with a certificate that it has a near zero hmf does not have any direct implication that product made from the same ingredients in the same factory on the same equipment has high hmf. It does not. In debating they would call it a 'straw man' argument. Create a fear, have the product that addresses that fear, and a grateful clientelle will buy it. Have NEVER heard of colonies poisoned by high HMF fondant. HAVE heard of colonies...large numbers of colonies....made very sick by bee candy made using acid. This however relates to instances over 50 years ago, and the vendors of another invert/fondant brand raised this ghost in negative marketing against other brands (including against yours) and it was/is utterly false.

I *think* I know who one of your makers are..have visited their plant...had a delegation of senior figures here giving a presentation. I buy and use their fondant in block form. That I decline to pay the premium for prepack labelled for bees is a matter of my choice. (Other people making different choices is just as valid) Number of colonies we have harmed feeding our bees using this product instead over the 30 years or so we have been using this product.......zero. This will total well in excess of 200t of fondant...have used both the bakers and..to a lesser extent...the prepacks during shortages.

As for (from another poster) the product going hard and unuseable.......this is an error of method not a faulty product. Prepack addresses this issue very nicely, but when cutting from full 12.5 or 15kg blocks it requires to be bagged or have some other means of containing the condensation and preventing evaporation. Cut faces NOT in direct contact with the bees and not sealed in DO tend to dry out and become hard, which is less frequently an issue with the smaller crystal versions for bee feeding.

Last load of fondant we got in (it was Sudzucker-product) was earlier this year and was 8.10 per 15kg box. Prices of sugar have risen a lot since then so that is plainly not a relevant figure today, and I follow the London sugar prices to be well informed for purchasing decisions or to know when I am offered a discounted or out of code batch of sugar just what constitutes the correct rate for it..

IMPORTANT
None of the above..or at any stage in this thread...should be taken as citicising Patricks product btw. It is an excellent product and will give first class results. However...the truth is that pretty well ALL of the inverts and fondants are excellent products.

Having witnessed the negative marketing another brand did against other makers this is a storm in a teacup. They openly stated that other brands were toxic to bees and apparently had the test results to prove it...trouble was it was their OWN department that produced them, and the sample size in their testes was small and thus statistically of little value.

Beekeepers have paid out vast sums over the years to feed their bees high priced syrups and fondants...not prepared to take the chance that the negative marketing was not true.
 

Boston Bees 

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It IS a red herring. not because hmf is harmless, but because high hmf fondant is not a serious risk. It has to be seriously high to be harmful. Just because a product does not come with a certificate that it has a near zero hmf does not have any direct implication that product made from the same ingredients in the same factory on the same equipment has high hmf. It does not. In debating they would call it a 'straw man' argument. Create a fear, have the product that addresses that fear, and a grateful clientelle will buy it. Have NEVER heard of colonies poisoned by high HMF fondant. HAVE heard of colonies...large numbers of colonies....made very sick by bee candy made using acid. This however relates to instances over 50 years ago, and the vendors of another invert/fondant brand raised this ghost in negative marketing against other brands (including against yours) and it was/is utterly false.

I *think* I know who one of your makers are..have visited their plant...had a delegation of senior figures here giving a presentation. I buy and use their fondant in block form. That I decline to pay the premium for prepack labelled for bees is a matter of my choice. (Other people making different choices is just as valid) Number of colonies we have harmed feeding our bees using this product instead over the 30 years or so we have been using this product.......zero. This will total well in excess of 200t of fondant...have used both the bakers and..to a lesser extent...the prepacks during shortages.

As for (from another poster) the product going hard and unuseable.......this is an error of method not a faulty product. Prepack addresses this issue very nicely, but when cutting from full 12.5 or 15kg blocks it requires to be bagged or have some other means of containing the condensation and preventing evaporation. Cut faces NOT in direct contact with the bees and not sealed in DO tend to dry out and become hard, which is less frequently an issue with the smaller crystal versions for bee feeding.

Last load of fondant we got in (it was Sudzucker-product) was earlier this year and was 8.10 per 15kg box. Prices of sugar have risen a lot since then so that is plainly not a relevant figure today, and I follow the London sugar prices to be well informed for purchasing decisions or to know when I am offered a discounted or out of code batch of sugar just what constitutes the correct rate for it..

IMPORTANT
None of the above..or at any stage in this thread...should be taken as citicising Patricks product btw. It is an excellent product and will give first class results. However...the truth is that pretty well ALL of the inverts and fondants are excellent products.

Having witnessed the negative marketing another brand did against other makers this is a storm in a teacup. They openly stated that other brands were toxic to bees and apparently had the test results to prove it...trouble was it was their OWN department that produced them, and the sample size in their testes was small and thus statistically of little value.

Beekeepers have paid out vast sums over the years to feed their bees high priced syrups and fondants...not prepared to take the chance that the negative marketing was not true.
Well, I think that pretty much wraps up the thread.
 

Beebe 

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Somehow it's escalated to seven.
It IS a red herring. not because hmf is harmless, but because high hmf fondant is not a serious risk. It has to be seriously high to be harmful. Just because a product does not come with a certificate that it has a near zero hmf does not have any direct implication that product made from the same ingredients in the same factory on the same equipment has high hmf. It does not. In debating they would call it a 'straw man' argument. Create a fear, have the product that addresses that fear, and a grateful clientelle will buy it. Have NEVER heard of colonies poisoned by high HMF fondant. HAVE heard of colonies...large numbers of colonies....made very sick by bee candy made using acid. This however relates to instances over 50 years ago, and the vendors of another invert/fondant brand raised this ghost in negative marketing against other brands (including against yours) and it was/is utterly false.

I *think* I know who one of your makers are..have visited their plant...had a delegation of senior figures here giving a presentation. I buy and use their fondant in block form. That I decline to pay the premium for prepack labelled for bees is a matter of my choice. (Other people making different choices is just as valid) Number of colonies we have harmed feeding our bees using this product instead over the 30 years or so we have been using this product.......zero. This will total well in excess of 200t of fondant...have used both the bakers and..to a lesser extent...the prepacks during shortages.

As for (from another poster) the product going hard and unuseable.......this is an error of method not a faulty product. Prepack addresses this issue very nicely, but when cutting from full 12.5 or 15kg blocks it requires to be bagged or have some other means of containing the condensation and preventing evaporation. Cut faces NOT in direct contact with the bees and not sealed in DO tend to dry out and become hard, which is less frequently an issue with the smaller crystal versions for bee feeding.

Last load of fondant we got in (it was Sudzucker-product) was earlier this year and was 8.10 per 15kg box. Prices of sugar have risen a lot since then so that is plainly not a relevant figure today, and I follow the London sugar prices to be well informed for purchasing decisions or to know when I am offered a discounted or out of code batch of sugar just what constitutes the correct rate for it..

IMPORTANT
None of the above..or at any stage in this thread...should be taken as citicising Patricks product btw. It is an excellent product and will give first class results. However...the truth is that pretty well ALL of the inverts and fondants are excellent products.

Having witnessed the negative marketing another brand did against other makers this is a storm in a teacup. They openly stated that other brands were toxic to bees and apparently had the test results to prove it...trouble was it was their OWN department that produced them, and the sample size in their testes was small and thus statistically of little value.

Beekeepers have paid out vast sums over the years to feed their bees high priced syrups and fondants...not prepared to take the chance that the negative marketing was not true.

Says it all...."the sample size in their testes was small". ;) :ROFLMAO:

(Very useful information by the way) (y)
 
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