By Suzannah Schneider, Communications Manager and Certification Coordinator
Hart|Beet Farm, Eolia, MO
This time of year, we're celebrating maple sugaring season! Peaceful sugar bushes, a roaring fire, billowing steam. Plastic tubing, and the aroma of maple wafting through the air. At the end of it all: a perfect topping for a stack of pillowy pancakes.
Maple sap flows freely when temperatures are above freezing during the day, and below freezing at night. This usually takes place from the months of February through April throughout the Northeast down south to Tennessee and on west to Minnesota. Homesteaders, outdoor enthusiasts, farmers, and waffle aficionados alike can all get involved to savor this sweet process that comes with the changing seasons.
Did you know Certified Naturally Grown certifies maple as part of our Produce Certification? Just like our other certifications, we require that maple producers use absolutely no synthetic chemicals in production. But we also ensure that maple producers are using the best practices to preserve the health of the trees.
For instance, producers must use taps that are no larger than 5/16" in diameter. They must also minimize the number of taps based on the circumference of the tree to avoid stunting future growth. Additionally, sap harvested from this wild crop must not come from trees surrounded by all-too-common dumps in the woods, or abandoned cars that are leaking oil.
You can learn more specifics about our maple requirements on our supplemental inspection form for maple producers.
Certifying your maple can help you gain access to better markets, earning your hard work a spot on shelves of local grocers and co-ops, for example.
Read on to learn about some of our Certified Naturally Grown maple producers. Just like produce or livestock operations around the country, there's room for all at the sticky maple syrup table.Read more