- The maple syrup reserve system in Quebec and how it helps keep Canada’s liquid gold from running out.
- The QMSP also has control over the Global Strategic Maple Syrup Reserve, which has a capacity of more than 45 million kilograms of maple syrup.
Quebec’s maple syrup reserve system and how it helps prevent Canada’s liquid gold from running out.
In recent days, the maple syrup industry in Canada has gained international attention, with headlines proclaiming that the country has been forced to draw on its strategic reserve to compensate for shortages.
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Quebec produces approximately 73% of the world’s maple syrup. In addition, the Quebec Maple Syrup Producers (QMSP), the organization that governs the province’s maple syrup producers, has announced that it will release approximately 22.7 million kilograms of maple syrup from its strategic reserve into the market by February.
The news that Canada has a stockpile of maple syrup may have come as a surprise for some. The purpose of this reserve, why it had to be used, and whether there was ever a shortage.
What exactly is the strategic reserve?
The maple syrup company in Quebec is subject to a supply-management system, which means it uses a quota system run by the QMSP that dictates market volume. The QMSP also has control over the Global Strategic Maple Syrup Reserve, which has a capacity of more than 45 million kilograms of maple syrup.
The reserve was established in 2000 to keep the syrup in stock and ensure a consistent supply for national and international markets, according to Hélène Normandin, a spokesperson for QMSP, on CBC’s As It Happens.
The Laurierville Plant and Warehouse in the Centre-du-Québec region has 24,805 square meters, equivalent to five football fields. That location alone can store 25 million kilograms of maple syrup, or 94,000 barrels.
According to Michael Farrell, former director of Cornell University’s Uihlein Forest, a maple syrup research or extension field station in Lake Placid, N.Y., maple syrup can be appropriately stored in barrels for many years.
When the yield is good or more syrup is produced than wanted, the excess can be sold to the QMSP also stored “so that when there are bad years, you have enough to keep people stocked up on syrup on their pancakes,” according to Farrell.
“Without this, in reserve, there would be significantly less syrup on store shelves, and the price would be significantly higher.”
Nearly 3,000 tonnes were stolen from a storage facility in Quebec between 2011 and 2012. However, it was a few years earlier that the strategic reserve was depleted.
Source: CBC News
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