CONCORD, N.H.—The U.S. maple syrup crop was a record breaking 5.028 million gallons in 2022, the USDA reported, smashing the old record of 4.1 million gallons set in 2020.
Leading the way was Vermont, which made more than half the U.S. total with 2.55 million gallons, up 46 percent from the previous year, the USDA said.
New York was second in the nation, with 845,000 gallons made. Maine was third with 672,000 gallons; Wisconsin was 4th with 440,000 and Michigan 5th at 190,000.
Other states surveyed were New Hampshire at 167,000 and Pennsylvania at 164,000. [ MORE ]
LONGUEUIL, Que.—Quebec’s 2022 maple syrup crop is the biggest in history, by a lot.
The Québec Maple Syrup Producers federation today announced the harvest in the province was an estimated 211.2 million pounds, smashing the old production record of 175 million pounds, set in 2020.
The production average was a yield of 4.26 pounds per tap in 2022, the federation said.
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FAIRFIELD, Vt.—Some sugarmakers are holding on this week for the last drop of sap in what is shaping up to be a big U.S. crop.
“If you got tight vacuum you can make it through this warm weather,” said 110,000-tap sugarmaker Gary Corey on Friday during a tour for The Maple News of his sugarhouse in Fairfield, Vt.
Corey, who sugars with wife Danielle, was expecting to still get sap through the early part of this week.
As of Friday, the pair were at 71,000 gallons of syrup made. [ MORE ]
ISLAND POND, Vt.—The U.S. maple season of 2022 is shaping up to be a whopper.
A two-week charge of sap at the end of March into early April created what for many is full crop and for some far beyond.
“Altogether the U.S. has a much bigger crop than last year. Perhaps 50 percent larger overall,” said Bruce Bascom of Bascom Maple Farms in Alstead, N.H. and one of the premier bulk syrup buyers in the U.S.
Bascom said the dominant color grade this season Amber.
In most of the northern areas of the Maple Belt, producers were enjoying big sap runs.
“As of now sir I can tell you that this year has topped the last close to five or maybe even better,” said Brent Bagwell, a woods manager for the massive SapJack operation in Island Pond, Vt. who is in charge of a 160,000-tap sugarbush there. [ MORE ]
BENSON, Vt.—Sugarmakers in the Northeast were happy for a cold weather reset this week, after a six day run.
“I’m hoping we get recharged with a good hard freeze,” said Jeff Disorda of Rocky Ridge Sugarworks in Benson, Vt. on Sunday.
Temperatures were dipping into the teens and a dusting of snow coated sugar bushes early Monday.
Disorda said he had surpassed last year’s production, making 600 gallons so far off his 1,500 taps.
But his sugar content was dropping to low levels, as low as 1.2 percent sugar this weekend, after a season of low test sap.
“The best we had this season was 1.8,” Disorda said.
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ORWELL, Ohio—Areas of the southern Maple Belt are almost done, and done early.
“It doesn’t look good here,” said Ray Gingerich of Orwell, Ohio. “We’re only on our second week of boiling and now it looks like it’s over.”
Gingerich said sugarmakers in his area of Northeast Ohio were already pulling taps or were about to, as temperatures hit the 70s and no freezes in sight for 10 days.
“People with buckets are hanging them up.”
He said most sugarmakers are only at about half of a crop or maybe a little better, which would amount to a disaster if it stopped now, given how little syrup there is in the marketplace and how high demand is, Gingerich said.
Over in Pennsylvania, producers were also about halfway, but more optimistic.
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NEW BRAINTREE, Mass.—Sugarmakers in New England are hoping for the first big run of the season this coming week.
“Get ready, it’s gonna be big,” said Howard Boyden, a sugarmaker from Conway, Mass. and president of the North American Maple Syrup Council.
Boyden was on hand for the annual tree tapping ceremony on Friday for the Massachusetts Maple Producers Association, held at Grand Maple Farms in New Braintree.
“I think this week is, yes going to be be good unless Mother Nature has another idea. It is farming after all,” said Paul Schur, who runs the operation with son, Justin.
“We’ve had three runs and out of that two good ones,” Schur said, regarding his 900-tap operation on vacuum. ‘We’ve made 40 gallons so far.”
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