Canada’s “OPEC of Maple Syrup” announced that it is releasing roughly half of its strategic reserves – valued at 50 million pounds of maple syrup – due to a global shortage of traditional waffle and pancake topping.
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Quebec’s maple syrup producers, comprised of approximately 11,000 Canadian maple syrup producers, control about 70% of the world’s maple syrup supply, and their stranglehold on the market has become “compared to the oil countries’ organization’s grip on oil,” according to The New York Post.
However, the group says it has been hit by a surge in demand as more people cook at home amid the pandemic, coupled with a 24% year-over-year decline in production due to warmer spring temperatures and a shorter season.
In addition to releasing their reserves, Quebec’s maple syrup producers are planning to approve more production next season to offset this year’s decline. According to NPR, the group will tap an additional 7 million trees to return to typical production levels and replenish their reserves.
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“That’s why the reserve is made so that you never miss maple syrup,” said Helene Normandin, communications director for Quebec Maple Syrup Producers, the point of sale. “And we won’t miss maple syrup!”