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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am trying to get my hands on some "raw" honey from bees who haven't been fed high fructose corn syrup. There is a large vendor online that states they only feeds their bees honey. They seem a tad bit shady because they only operate out of a warehouse that is closed to the public. It makes me wonder whats going on in there...Anyways, how could a beekeeper that ships many colonies to pollinate many different crops only rely on honey? Also, does the diet of the honey bee affect the honey in any way? I assumed it did, but now that I think about it, I am doubting it makes any difference.

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Why don't you go to a farmers market and find some small scale local honey?

I really can't think of any farming operation that is open to the public due to the liability of letting someone wander around there. There may be thousands of bees flying around that warehouse and it only takes one person that is allergic to stings to create a lawsuit.

The diet of the honey bee does affect the taste of the honey, its color, and its aroma.

Does the vendor offer his honey for sale locally or does he just sell in bulk to honey markets? The scale of his business may be great enough that would not be feasible to bottle and sell it in small jars and he ships it in bulk barrels to a bottler.

Find a local beekeeper and buy from them. He will be more than happy to explain his process to you.
 

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Funny story about about my "local beekeeper". He buys his honey in bulk and slaps on his own label and calls it his honey! I honestly thought that it was illegal to do so. As it turns out, its not the least bit illegal. Regarding the online vendor, they only sell jars and not any bulk containers. Not even five pound containers. I just didn't think it was possible to be a beekeeper without supplementing your bees' diet.
 

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I am trying to get my hands on some "raw" honey from bees who haven't been fed high fructose corn syrup. There is a large vendor online that states they only feeds their bees honey. They seem a tad bit shady because they only operate out of a warehouse that is closed to the public. It makes me wonder whats going on in there...Anyways, how could a beekeeper that ships many colonies to pollinate many different crops only rely on honey? Also, does the diet of the honey bee affect the honey in any way? I assumed it did, but now that I think about it, I am doubting it makes any difference.

Thanks
Trust your Spidey sense. As Robert DeNiro's character says in the movie "Ronin", "If there is doubt, there is no doubt." I say this regardless of whether what you report the beekeeper in question reportedly said is true and honest. You already doubt/question what he said to you and that is not a good way to start a business relationship.

On the other hand there is "Trust, but verify." What if the beekeeper in question does feed corn or sucrose syrup, but it does not show up in his honey? Buy enough of a quantity to have it tested and have it tested. Then you will know what is in his honey as far as the test goes. Lab tests have to test for specific properties.

I believe that deknow knows where to get testing done.
 

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Frankly I doubt there are any large scale commercial beekeepers in your area who actually feed honey to their bees, and only honey.

Just wondering if you confused what you read, do you have a link to the site, or a quote?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I have no problem saying the name of the vendor, but I do not want to ruin their reputation in case the vendor is telling the truth. The warehouse is in New York which is freezing during the winter months. I am more than certain that sugar syrup or HFCS is involved in the equation here; not that there is anything wrong with sugar syrup but I prefer honesty. The website did not mention any information about the bees' diet, as most websites do not. So I asked and they said they only feed honey. I mean common'...ONLY honey? Wouldn't that be way too costly and inefficient?
 

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Some warehouse type operations in NY don't keep any bees, they just package honey.
I am familiar with a few in my region that operate this way. They try to keep it a big secret.
Are you sure they actually have bees?
 

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I have no problem saying the name of the vendor, but I do not want to ruin their reputation in case the vendor is telling the truth. The warehouse is in New York which is freezing during the winter months. I am more than certain that sugar syrup or HFCS is involved in the equation here; not that there is anything wrong with sugar syrup but I prefer honesty. The website did not mention any information about the bees' diet, as most websites do not. So I asked and they said they only feed honey. I mean common'...ONLY honey? Wouldn't that be way too costly and inefficient?
Depends. Isn't that what you want and are willing to pay for? If that's what they do then they must know what their costs are and figure honey as feed into the equation.
 

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They seem a tad bit shady because they only operate out of a warehouse that is closed to the public. It makes me wonder whats going on in there...
I'll tell you what is going on there:
They are working out of a warehouse that is closed to the public.
Most business's manufacture, process or assemble in warehouses that are closed to the public.
Our honey bottling facility is closed to the public.
What? Are we supposed to hire additional staff to set by the phone just to give tours?
Beekeepers are very busy folks and often to not bottle on a schedule.
Our facility is not like a public museum, it is in fact a place for staff only that understand food safety rules and sanitation.
During this time of year, I have a hard time finding time to give myself a tour of our facility.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I am willing to pay extra but $10 a pound is not a deal, its a scam. I can't imagine how they make a profit if they sell for $10 and ONLY feed honey.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I guess will just stay on the lookout for my local beekeepers. Thanks for the help everyone. Much appreciated.
 

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They may not be "large scale commercial bee keepers". There are plenty of sources out there that you can verify and feel good about dealing with. Find them.
 

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Drive down the roads in your rural area and look for hives. Pull in there driveway and ask if they have any honey for sale and then ask them face to face how they feed. That is the easiest way to get what you are looking for and the local bee keeper will be glad to talk to a new customer.
 

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Thanks a ton! I can finally feel confident about the honey I am eating.

No matter what the honey comes from, the process that makes it is really only bee puke. They collect and injest it, carry it around in the stomach and process it, then regurgitate it, stand around and fan it until it dries out, then pull wax off their butt and cap it.
 

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I have no problem saying the name of the vendor, but I do not want to ruin their reputation in case the vendor is telling the truth. The warehouse is in New York which is freezing during the winter months. I am more than certain that sugar syrup or HFCS is involved in the equation here; not that there is anything wrong with sugar syrup but I prefer honesty. The website did not mention any information about the bees' diet, as most websites do not. So I asked and they said they only feed honey. I mean common'...ONLY honey? Wouldn't that be way too costly and inefficient?
I practically don't feed my bees, and I live even further North. They don't need to be fed to survive, though obviously it has uses.

Can it be profitable on a large scale, though? Well, maybe if the price is high enough. Usually, though, the average price one gets for his honey is negatively proportional to the volume of honey he produces. It's easy to sit on a few hundred pounds of honey until someone willing to pay top price for it comes by, but it is less so with thousands of pounds.
 
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