FAQ | General public

How is maple syrup classified?

Maple syrup produced in Quebec is delivered in barrels and classified. In practice, this means that maple syrup from all 200,000-odd barrels produced annually is sampled by quality inspectors who determine authenticity and classify it according to light transmission as well as any flavor defects. Quebec is the only maple syrup producing region in the world that can boast of such an accomplishment.

How are maple trees tapped?

Holes are drilled though the bark and into the trees, and sap spouts (known as “spiles”) are tapped into the holes. The spiles are fitted to tubes connected to collector pipes that carry the maple sap to the sugar shack.

How do you identify a sugar maple?

Seasoned maple syrup producers can spot a sugar maple just by looking at its bark. If you aren’t as familiar with different kinds of tree bark, you can identify a sugar maple by its leaves, which are less angular that those of its cousin, the red maple. The leaf on the Canadian flag is a sugar maple leaf.

Where can I find recipes that use maple syrup?

A host of recipes with maple syrup are available at maplefromquebec.ca.

Why do some people call the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers a monopoly?

When someone calls the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers a monopoly, it’s most likely due to ignorance of the laws and regulations governing the marketing of agricultural products in Quebec. While it is true that the Federation’s sales agency is the only representative of maple syrup producers in Quebec, this is a result of a unanimous vote by their delegates. Furthermore, the Federation must reach an agreement with the buyers association with regard to sales regulations, including prices, and the entire process is overseen by the agricultural marketing board (RMAAQ).

What is the sugar content of maple sap?

Depending on the period of the season and the time of day, the sugar content of maple sap will vary between 1.5% and 3%, the average being 2.2%.

Why do we have a global strategic maple syrup reserve?

The purpose of the maple syrup reserve is to adjust the global supply of maple syrup in response to global consumer demand. During consecutive abundant harvests, maple syrup is stored to avoid flooding the market. And during poor harvests, the global strategic maple syrup reserve makes it possible to meet demand should it exceed supply for that year.

What is a joint plan?

A joint plan is a kind of toolbox that allows producers to organize to market a specific product. To put a plan in place, producers must vote 67% in favor of a draft proposal submitted to them. A joint plan is issued by virtue of Quebec’s Act respecting the marketing of agricultural, food and fish products. Régie des marchés agricoles et alimentaires du Québec, the agricultural marketing board, is responsible for monitoring plan management.

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