Sugar at Costco and most other large distributors is not a high margin product. Essentially you may think that a 500 or 1000 pound purchase is a lot but the people you have reached out to think differently. This is confirmed by the fact that they do not return your calls.
I was in the same position as you once. Went to Roger's (a large sugar processing plant in the area) to get a pallet thinking I would save a few dollars. I was invisible to the union workers once I had parked my vehicle. I walked around the loading bay. 30 minutes later somebody acknowledged my presence and sent me to the office. The office guy sold me a pallet of sugar at a slightly higher price than Costco. (I was not leaving empty handed) Office man told me it is better not to come back should I need sugar, and to go to Costco in the future , seeing as how it was cheaper there. They made it very clear that they did not want customers like me. It was a bit of an eye opener at the time.
From my understanding you might get lucky and get 35 cent a pound sugar on sale. Make sure you don't go spending an extra $50 in fuel and wear and tear on your vehicle to save $25.
Good luck. For what it is worth, that sugar should have been fed 4 weeks ago and perhaps ending 2 weeks ago. Now temperatures are dropping and the rains are here. It is harder for the bees to process today than it was 4 weeks ago. The end result is you "tire" your bees and age them prematurely when they process that sugar. There is not another flush of young bees coming in. You would have gotten a better bang for yor buck 4 weeks ago. Regardless, if they need it, feed them, sooner would have been better IMHO.
I am feeding right now, but for an entirely different reason. Yellow Jackets have been nuts this year. They took out two smaller hives, stripped every larvae out, even with reduced entrances and taking out over 50 nests, they are still an issue. This late in the year, they are ignoring the meat baits for some reason (but not larvae?), but they are still going after the feeder. I go out in the morning and night, while the bees are not out, and electrocute them. Burning yellow jackets smell a lot like burning hair Tomorrow my cordless shopvac will be here, less fun than zapping but probably more effective.
Instrumental Insemination & Northern VSH Queens
At that point, meat ceases to be workable bait. It happens every year.
Have you called Dadant or Dakota Guiness to see if they have syrup available in or near Port Angeles?
Their pricing is very reasonable.
I have exactly ONE more hive than you.
That makes my opinion beyond dispute!
I was unaware of Dakota Guinness before I saw Harry's reference above. And I thought their page on sugar for beekeepers was interesting enough to reproduce the text here (the lower part of the page is from the farmer coop that manufactures the sugar that Dakota Guinness sells to beekeepers):
For All Your Fall, Winter and Spring Bee Feeding Needs
Our sucrose is 1/3 water – 2/3 dry sugar mix.
We ship from the Wahpeton, ND factory to Midwest beekeepers and we ship dry sugar by rail to 2 locations in California—Vernon and Lodi, where the sugar is reconstituted to liquid form, according to the specs. You may order 50,000 pound truck load deliveries and smaller pickups.
We will accommodate for delivery anything over 25,000 pounds. Pick up in totes or tanks only.
We will have sufficient quantities of sugar syrup (sucrose) both in the Midwest and in California/West Coast for deliver or pickup.
Call 888-553-8393 for the latest price quotes for your area.
As a cooperative, owned by the farmers who grow the sugarbeets, we understand the need for bee-keepers to find the most cost efficient way to operate their business. We would like to thank you for giving us the opportunity to join you in a win-win opportunity.
MDFC has been making liquid sugar available to the bee industry for approximately four years. In 2007, MDFC completed an upgrade on our process for liquid sugar. A filter was installed that removes particles as small as a grain of sugar. A 15,000 gallon tank has been put in place that allows the liquid sugar to be produced in a more uniform manner, allowing lower shipping temperatures, and more flexibility in load scheduling.
At MDFC, liquid sugar is produced from:
-Food grade sugar directly off the production line.
-Food grade sugar returning in rail cars. Food grade standards require all returned sugar to be removed from a rail car prior to loading a rail car for the next customer.
-Food grade sugar from production that may not meet food customer’s specification for such things as the grain size of the sugar. Certain customer specifications impact the way sugar will function in different food manufacturing applications.
The color contained in sugar and in liquid sugar made from granulated sugar does not negatively impact the nutritional value or functionality of the sugar. The food industry is very sensitive to the color of sugar because of the potential changes in the color of the foods using the sugar for their end products (marshmallows is a good example). Large companies set the standard for the sugar and have in many cases set the standard for their most color sensitive foods because they use the same sugar handling system for both color sensitive and non-color sensitive food products. The color of refined sugar has no impact on the digestibility or nutritional value; rather it is cosmetic and impacts the color of the end food product.
Allen E Larson, Controller
Minn-Dak Farmers Cooperative
USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft
You will not be able to purchase from Cargill. Mann lake has an account so call mann lake to order from Cargill. show up with a tote and they will fill you up for .2890 a lb. They should have they dry sugar as well. Dont buy from dakota gunness. They rip you off.
I order truckloads of hfcs from ADM thru Dadant. The few times I called Guness, they had a higher price. Yet the syrup would ship from ADM. They are a middleman.
If you buy a full load there is brokers that will work with you. It's been a few years since I bought a load out of FL. The price was $.225 delivered on 42K pounds. Load i got was all in 5 lb bags. Easy for resale to all you hobbies at $.30 a lb. Didn"t take long to get rid of my extra.
Here in Southeastern North Carolina Costco is roughly $22/50lbs for fine sugar.
Wal-Mart recently has 25lb bags for $7.48.
Its more course and inconsistent in quality, but have yet to have any issues with it.