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Tapping Red Maples

While sugar maples are the gold standard for sap production, red maples are also an important source of sap for maple products.

The Forests of Southern New England, 2012

This report summarizes the U.S. Forest Service, Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) forest inventory data, collected from 2008 to 2012, for Southern New England, defined as Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. In addition to providing regional and state-level summaries, the reports highlights three focus plots, one average or prototypical plot from each State, as a means to better tell the story of the forests of the region. Forests cover an estimated 5,128,000 acres or 59 percent of Southern New EnglandÑ1,736,000 acres in Connecticut (56 percent of the State), 3,028,000 acres in Massachusetts (61 percent), and 364,000 acres in Rhode Island (55 percent). There was no substantial change in the area of forest land between the current, 2012, and the previous, 2007, FIA inventories.

United States Standards for Grades of Maple Syrup

Voluntary U.S. grade standards are issued under the authority of the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946, which provides for the development of official U.S. grades to designate different levels of quality. These grade standards are available for use by producers, suppliers, buyers, and consumers. As in the case of other standards for grades of fresh and processed fruits, vegetables, and specialty crops these standards are designed to facilitate orderly marketing by providing a convenient basis for buying and selling, for establishing quality control programs, and for determining loan values.

What’s trending

The 2012 USDA Census of Agriculture reveals trends in growth for number of producers and number of taps in many states.

When to Stop: Some Factors Affecting The Economics of Processing Grade Syrup

Near the end of each sugaring season, producers must make a decision when to stop making maple syrup. Sometimes the decision is an easy call, such as when the onset of bud break and cessation of sap flow coincide. The decision to stop production can also be the result of careful economic analysis of the cost of production versus value of the product. The variable costs (fuel, labor, filters, etc.) of any maple operation are a key component to this sort of analysis.