The salt companies might want to be ...

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by Skaggs Lawn Care, Feb 25, 2008.

  1. Skaggs Lawn Care

    Skaggs Lawn Care Junior Member
    Messages: 22

    careful. We all know economics 101: supply + demand = GREED.

    Honestly, this has not been one of the hardest winters. It has been awhile since we have seen this kind of winter. The salt companies are looking at how green their bottom line could look.

    Having worked in personal injury, if there is a slip/fall case or accident because of the salt shortage, there could be a lawsuit and the major salt companies could be included. I guess this is something they are willing to risk. Hope they have a good umbrella policy.

    All contractors should keep good records on your attempts at locating salt. It may come in handy some day.

    Something to think about. ;)
  2. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,344

    The mines are still selling salt for the same price and there's not enough to go around. You have to pay to play, that's the way the world works, supply and demand. Get your wallet out or don't get any salt, those are your choices.
  3. BlackIrish

    BlackIrish Senior Member
    Messages: 909

    I guess I'm luckier than some. I'm still using last years salt :eek:
    Lots to go still.
  4. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 32,467

    Might want to check the weather records there mister horseday. Numerous areas of the countries ARE setting records. My area alone has had the snowiest Feb on record as well as the snowiest Dec, Jan and Feb on record.

    And if you think about it and look back, when the previous records were set, liability issues were not as big of a deal because people knew that winter meant slippery conditions, so not as much salt was used as a whole on roadways as well as parking lots. It's a thing called personal responsibility, I thought about suing myself last week when I slipped getting out of my truck in my own parking lot, but then I figured out I was the ******* that wasn't careful enough.

    Anyways, back on topic. You need to look at the winter overall from back in Dec when there were ice storms that started in Oklahoma and went all the way to the Northeast. Then the constant barrage of storms through the center of the country--Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire--as well as in Canada. Usage is up tremendously compared to previous years and there is no way to plan for that.
  5. Vaughn Schultz

    Vaughn Schultz Addict
    Messages: 1,571

    Do you hear yourself think ? THEY ARE NOT SELLING WHAT THEY HAVE FOR MORE !!!!! THEY ARE NOT SELLING DO TO THE FACT THEY HAVE NOTHING TO SELL. All the talk about salt being 150 a ton is for freight, you need to pay for to come in out of state in some places.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2008
  6. Woodland

    Woodland Senior Member
    Messages: 270

    Huh, you think the salt companies are going to be sued in a slip and fall case? What planet are you on?
  7. oldmankent

    oldmankent Addict
    Messages: 1,321

    I just heard a news story on NPR this morning about how some cities are starting to use beet juice as deicer. I think it is mixed with a couple of other things, but it works better than salt and isn't hard on vehicles the way salt is. Have to use a tanker truck to spread it though, not a hopper. If I did alot of commercial and salting I would look into converting over to this method. Cheaper, better for the environment and works better than salt. There must be a downside though.
  8. Superior L & L

    Superior L & L PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,041

    There is a town about 20 mins from us that started to use beet juice. Its kind of like Magic salt.. They spray the salt with the beet juice in the salt bin and mix it up. They end up not using as much and also has a residue bilt up so it can last a couple of events!
    The local new did a story on it and th DPW guy sid they have used 40% less salt based on # of events. It is expensive but they are saving on salt, labor and gas
  9. OP
    Skaggs Lawn Care

    Skaggs Lawn Care Junior Member
    Messages: 22

    We have been using this product since 2001. It's a great product. We mix our salt with it when the salt is first delivered. It has a brown color and some people mistake it being mixed with sand. The sugar beet is like an activator. So for a guy who is salting a lot, this would be a great product. We mix 6 - 7 gallons per ton. If you are doing a set price for a lot, this is another way of using at less 30% less product per event.

    I also use the sugar beet product to spray down the salt spreader and the chain conveyor. It acts as a neutralizor on the salt. Sugar beet, by itself, is non-corrosive. This product may be something to look at for next year.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2008
  10. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 32,467

    I'll ditto the results with the beet juice. I started using it a little over 2 weeks ago and have seen a 50% reduction in salt usage now. This will probably be on the high side because the UV rays are much stronger now than in Dec or Jan, but I will continue using it.
  11. xtreem3d

    xtreem3d Addict
    Messages: 1,513

    i'm not sure about your parts of the country but they are talking about beet juice here because stream and tributaries are being flood w/ the excess salt and it's going to do harm eventually
  12. gd8boltman

    gd8boltman Senior Member
    Messages: 343

    Where are you purchasing the

    Beet Juice, and what are you paying per gallon? We too may look at this as an avenue for next season, but probably not this year.

  13. Superior L & L

    Superior L & L PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,041

    Wre do you buy then beet juice and what cost have you incured?
  14. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 32,467

    Well, not sure if I should reply as I might come across as a know-it-all. :rolleyes: And I don't want to risk offending horseday.

    Anyways, there's a company in Indy that is the distributor for the beet juice. Probably get edited but it's Roadway Solutions Inc.

    Cost is either paying more per gallon in a tote or getting a larger tank and getting it delivered in bulk. I had the tank, so I went that route. Mixing is a PITA, as you spread out your salt, apply the liquid over top, mix it up and push it into the storage bin.

    Having said that, when salt is in short supply and you need every last bit, it was well worth it. Just have to find a more efficient way of treating it in the future.
  15. bribrius

    bribrius Addict
    Messages: 1,609

    couple of the towns here in maine are mixing the salt with beet juice. i can see why you would want to do it Mark and also why it would be a PITA.

    i dunno. i dont use much salt so i couldnt foresee ordering it in bulk. im buying bags at 10.66 a fifty lb. bag at the lumber mill down the road. :(
    And last time i i put it down it came out of my own pocket since it was my choice to put it down to make it easier plowing and customer wouldnt pay for the salt.
  16. OP
    Skaggs Lawn Care

    Skaggs Lawn Care Junior Member
    Messages: 22

    The product is called Geo Melt. If you buy 270 gallon totes, the cost is $4.75 per gallon. If you buy 1500 gallons or more, the cost is $2.95 per gallon. If you want to go straight liquid, the product is called Geo Melt S, the cost is $2.50 per gallon over 1500 gallons. The cost for totes would be $3.50 per gallon.

    There is a small learning curve with this product. You will need to experiment with the conveyor speed to adjust the rate to get the results you want. You can save at least 30% salt usage by using this product.

    Don't forget there will be a cost for shipping added to the cost.