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Be very careful of fake foundation


#1

In April the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council claimed a sample of imported wax from China was 85% paraffin, and contained traces of varroa pesticide.

Not only are the buggers selling so called bees wax foundation which is a totally false claim but it is toxic to bees (paraffin), and has varroa pesticide in an unstipulated amount. The fix is to not buy foundation from ZGrey on the internet and only buy from a supplier you can trust.
May they suffer the stings of a thousand bees…


#2

The good thing is, varroa pesticide (OA?) is not found in paraffin, but only in the measly 15% of bees wax in that shoddy foundation.
Another point for foundationless if you can handle it.

Just cycled out my first lot of foundationless frames. The rendered wax is pristine.
Feeling sorry for those who depend on bought foundation. Unless you press your own, you likely have some toxic mix in your hives.


#3

Hi Peter, just hang on to your wax. If you want, you can come with us when the time comes to go to Kingaroy with our wax. Dave’s pretty reputable. I know he’ll give us our own wax back in foundation if we’re prepared to do two trips, or spend a night in Kingaroy.


#4

I have acquired some wax foundation which was purchased close to 30 years ago. It was to be used for making candles but the project never got underway.
Being so old and having the hexagonal print on it would there be a possibility it had paraffin in it? It has no smell or taste.
If there is a chance it isn’t bees wax is there a way to test?
Thanks.


#5

The only simple way that I can think of is to test the melting point. If you have a sous vide machine or a lab hot water bath, that should be easy. Put some wax in at 50C. If it melts, it is definitely paraffin. If you can take the temp all the way up to 65C, it is very likely (but not guaranteed) beeswax.

Sous vide sounds complicated, but you can now buy sous vide immersion heaters in the US for less than $100. Just put the wax in a zip bag, and wait for an hour or two. :wink:

https://www.drdarrinlew.us/global-warming/physical-properties-of-beeswax-and-paraffin-wax.html


#6

I doubt if any wax foundation purchased 30 years ago had any paraffin wax in it. Beeswax was so cheap & plentiful back in those days. It’s only been the last few years that Aussie beeswax has become scarce on account of how clean it is.

A recent bee customer gave me some frames containing very old wax foundation. The bees didn’t take to it very well in the brood. It might have been better off used in honey supers first, where the bees aren’t so fussy.

That’s something for you to be aware of.


#7

Hello @skeggley if the foundation is 30 years old I would be comfortable using it for foundation. This issue with the Chinese making foundation with paraffin mixed into the bees wax is a relatively new thing.
If in doubt you could lick it with your tongue, paraffin has a very distinctive taste, that isn’t a scientific test but I have compared with my Aussie foundation with a paraffin candle and the taste is very different.
Regards


#8

Did you know that they now have a branch at Morayfield? I will give them a call during next week as I will be needing foundation so the trip to Morayfield is only about 30-40 minutes.
Cheers


#9

Hi Peter, yes I knew that. I was taking my wax to Kingaroy because that’s where they make the foundation. We might be able to drop our wax off at Morayfield & pick the foundation up there as well. That would be good.


#10

hello Jeff,

you get you your foundation made extra thick if I remember correctly? We had a talk from a local beek with 1500 hives and he has started making his own foundation and also makes it double thickness.


#11

I like my foundation thicker than regular. The regular foundation weighs in at 15 to the kilo. Heavy is about 12 to the kilo (Quality Beekeeping Supplies).

Burnett Beekeeping Supplies only makes one thickness, which finishes up around 12 or 13 to the kilo. I just now weighed some, it worked out at around 13 & a half sheets to a kilo. They changed it before my last pickup.


#12

I would not be surprised if the price per sheet didn’t go down with reduces use of the wax but at least you could be sure it is 100% bees wax foundation.
Cheers mate