Canada Is Tapping Into A Secret Maple Syrup Reserve Due To Shortages

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Maple syrup bottles in Canada

Similar to the United States’ massive oil crisis causing the government to dip into oil reserves in order to stabilize gas prices for the rest of the country, Canada is going through a crisis of their own .

But instead of gas, they’re running out of maple syrup.

On Monday, the Quebec Maple Syrup Producers confirmed that they were releasing roughly 50 million pounds from its strategic maple syrup reserves, according to CNN Business, which is nearly half the stockpile.

As a result of the maple syrup crisis that the Canadian government now faces, many people are remembering the Great Canadian Maple Syrup Heist that took place between 2011 and 2012.

Canadian is suffering a serious maple syrup shortage.

From the outside, Canada seems like such a bizarre place, and it truly is.

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I mean, about a year ago in Alberta, Canada, you could be fined $25,000 for letting a moose lick your car — only in Canada would something like that happen.

And only in Canada could there possibly be a maple syrup shortage so massive, that the Quebec Maple Syrup Producers — commonly referred to as the OPEC of maple syrup — had to tap into their strategic maple syrup reserves in order to stabilize.

They use the strategic reserve in order to maintain a steady supply of maple syrup and also to control the price of the product for domestic consumption as well as for the exportation of the product to other countries around the world — the United States included.

As of 2020, Quebec produced 73% of all maple syrup in the world, and the United States accounted for approximately 63.3% of the amount exported, despite also producing the second most maple syrup in the world at 21% — with the rest of Canada coming in last at 6%.

According to the Quebec Maple Syrup Producers, the reason for the shortage has something to do with both the supply and the demand for maple syrup.

Since this year Canada saw a hot and short spring season, the harvest yield was much lower than their target yield for the year.

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Historically, 2021 was actually an average year for harvesting at 133 million pounds, but they’ve been trying to increase yields in order to keep up with the demand which keeps increasing.

Compared to last year, sales of maple syrup rose 21%, straining the supply, and causing the strategic maple syrup reserves to be tapped into.

The pandemic has increased the demand for maple syrup.

"This system prevents practically all stock shortages and ensures the market is adequately supplied," spokesperson Helene Normandin said.

"The pandemic helped in our case because we're seeing people cook more at home and use more local products,'' Normandin said in an interview with Bloomberg. "It's not just in Quebec the demand is increasing.''

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The current maple syrup crisis has people remembering the time when thieves siphoned millions of dollars worth of maple syrup from a warehouse in Saint-Louis-de-Blandford, Quebec.

Two-thirds of the syrup was recovered, according to the Quebec Provincial Police statement, and three people were arrested and five others were being sought in connection with the theft.

The Quebec Maple Syrup Producers revealed that up to 10 million pounds of maple syrup were being stored there with a value of around $30 million.

During a routine inventory check of the warehouse, which “had been secured by a fence and locks, and visited regularly,” federation president Serge Beaulieu said in a statement in August, they realized that the barrels that originally contained the maple syrup were empty.

They somehow transferred millions of dollars worth of maple syrup under the Quebec Maple Syrup Producers’ noses before finally getting caught — police seizing the vehicles that were used to transport the syrup as well as carts, lifts, scales, and kettles.

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.