vinegar sugar recipe
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    South Hamilton, MA

    Default vinegar sugar recipe

    I will feed my bees 2:1 sugar/water. I was thinking of adding vinegar (5%, from a grocery store) to improve the pH. Does it matter if it is white or apple cider vinegar? Assuming the ingredients have average pH, what is a good recipe? What is a good target pH?

    Reasons for using vinegar for acidifying:
    • It is regulated by the FDA (unlike vitamin c).
    • Bees already eat it because it is made when sugary foods go bad.

    Adding AA (ascorbic acid, vitamin c):
      Based on this, I'm estimating that 5.63 mg of AA per gallon tap water will be used to neutralize chlorine + chloramine.
    • I try not to use many supplements. They are not regulated well, and I hear about contamination.
    • I bought "500 mg w. Rose Hips Caplets 130 Ct". It is USP verified and expensive ($6). It should last my lifetime.
    • I might not need much AA, so fruit or honey might work.
    David Smolinski USDA hardiness zone 6b

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Mtn. View, Arkansas, USA

    Default Re: vinegar sugar recipe

    Nothing needs to be added to sugar syrup to prepare it for feeding bees.

    The bees adjust the ph when they process the syrup, and they adjust it to what they think it needs to be. The amount of vitamin C a honey bee need has not been determined, at least to my knowledge, so how are beekeepers to know if their bees are deficient in that vitamin?

    Adding vinegar to prevent spoilage may work, but that is unnecessary if 5:3 or thicker syrup is used. It won't ferment in the time the bees take to process and store it.
    42 + years - 24 colonies - IPM disciple - Naturally Skeptic

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Rutland County, Vermont,USA

    Default Re: vinegar sugar recipe

    I add a couple tablespoons pr/gal of 1:1 to deter spoilage, but have never found it necessary for 2:1 or thicker. I use organic apple cider vinegar, but I am sure white is just as effective. J

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