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During Maple Month, governor highlights New York's 'thriving' maple industry


Fri, Mar 1st 2024 01:25 pm

Encourages people to participate in special promotions throughout March; Maple Weekends March 16-17, 23-24

√ New York state ranks second in nation in maple production

Gov. Kathy Hochul on Friday encouraged New Yorkers to support their local maple producers during Maple Month. She highlighted New York’s upcoming Maple Weekends events and activities, which will take place March 16-17 and 23-24, along with other special events and promotions throughout the month.

Her team said, “New York state continues to rank second in the nation in maple production and is also home to the largest resource of tappable maple trees within the United States and more than 2,000 maple sugar makers.”

Hochul said, “With Maple Month officially underway, there’s no better time to support our local New York maple producers. New York state is home to an incredibly hardworking community of maple producers making some of the most delicious and innovative maple products in the world. I encourage all New Yorkers to participate in Maple Weekends this month to sample some of the world-class items that local vendors have to offer.”

As part of the kickoff to Maple Month, New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard A. Ball visited Dutch Hill Maple, a family-owned farm in Tully, for an annual maple tree tapping to highlight New York’s maple industry and the maple producers participating in the New York State Grown & Certified program. The event also included a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Dutch Hill Maple’s new sugarhouse, which was completed in 2023.

Ball said, “Every year in March, we celebrate maple, the first agricultural crop in New York state’s delicious harvest season! Thanks to our dedicated maple producers, including those who are in our NYS Grown & Certified program, New York continues to be a top maple producer in the country, contributing tremendously to our local communities and economies. With this sweet season officially underway, it’s the perfect time to visit a local maple producer, find out more about the syrup-making process, and taste some delicious New York products.

Maple Weekends

A press release noted, “Throughout the month of March each year, and the last two weekends of the month in particular, maple farms across the state open their doors to the public to provide a chance to taste pure maple syrup, right from the source, and experience the unique family tradition of making maple syrup in New York state. Producers offer tours and pancake breakfasts, sell maple products, and demonstrate the syrup-making process, which includes the traditional system of hanging buckets on trees or more modern methods of production using vacuum systems to increase the yield of sap per tree.”

A searchable list of Maple Weekend events is available at mapleweekend.nysmaple.com.

Maple Promotions

New York’s Taste NY Markets across the state are highlighting unique local maple products and producers during the month of March. Several markets are offering specials, including 20% off all maple and maple-themed products at the Hudson Valley | Catskills Welcome Center, a pancake breakfast special all month at the Finger Lakes Welcome Center, and special product sampling at the Capital Region Welcome Center. For a complete list of special maple promotions and events hosted by Taste NY, visit here.

More than 90 maple producers participate in the New York State Grown & Certified program, which verifies New York's agricultural producers and growers who adhere to food safety and environmental sustainability standards. Find a current list of maple producers who are a part of the program at certified.ny.gov/where-buy.

New York State Maple Producers Association Executive Director Helen Thomas said, “New York state’s maple season is in full gear as we start the month of March. Normally a tapping ceremony on March 1 signals the start of the season. We all agree the weather has been unusual this winter – cold weeks with a little snow followed by warm weeks that erase that snow cover. Our maple producers have had to be well prepared for earlier-than-normal sap runs. Many NY producers are reporting that they have made over half their crop already. The quality is excellent as first runs are often the best of the season. We look forward to NY Maple Weekends March 16-17 and 23-24 when we invite the public to come to the farm and see the process and taste the results!”

New York Farm Bureau President David Fisher said, "It doesn't get sweeter than March Maple month in New York state. Maple producers are opening their doors to showcase their farm operations that turn collected sap into delicious maple syrup products. New York Farm Bureau encourages all New Yorkers to enjoy the short season and support their local farm families, and we thank Gov. Hochul and Commissioner Ball for the support of this important part of the state's diverse farm community."

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Onondaga County Executive Director David Skeval said, “Some of the finest sugar maple on earth grows in Onondaga County, New York. Sugar maples comprise nearly 70% of all trees grow in Onondaga County. That, along with our rolling hills, make Onondaga County the ideal location for maple sap production. We are grateful for the support New York State Agriculture and Markets provides the maple industry, and are very proud of our maple producers.”

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