Canada releases 22,000 tonnes of stockpiled maple syrup as home baking decimates supplies

Northern Ireland 'has great potential' say US and Canada

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A combination of a rise in home cooking and a poor harvest from bad weather have both caused an increase in demand for the syrup. More than 22,000 tonnes of syrup are set to be released by Quebec Maple Syrup Producers.

This company is a government-sponsored cartel representing 11,000 producers responsible for 73 per cent of the entire global supply of syrup.

Production in the maple syrup sector has fallen quite significantly this year, with it reducing by around a quarter due to a shorter and warmer spring.

Helene Normandin, a spokesperson for the company, told National Public Radio in the US that the reserve was in place to ensure that demand would always be met for the maple syrup.

Kevin McCormick, a Nova Scotia-based producer, also spoke of the impact that the decrease of production has had on the industry.

He said: “This year’s production was lower overall, and it really was a combination of Mother Nature being uncooperative as far as a good season and the good news about maple syrup’s health benefits.”

This comes after Guy Verhofstadt took aim at British beekeepers in a renewed attack at Brexit’s “red tape”.

The MEP and former Belgian prime minister was reacting to a report from beekeepers who were calling on retailers to specify which country the honey has come from.

Tweeting yesterday, Mr Verhofstadt said: “You know who does supposedly silly things like reliable food labelling? The EU!

“And you know why?

“Because protecting consumers AND supporting businesses can only be done at a single market level.

“Brexit = red tape + more administration.”

Lynne Ingram, chair of the Honey Authenticity Network UK, who are campaigning for clearer and better information for shoppers, called on the Government to implement new rules to ensure this is possible.

Ms Ingram said: “The consumer needs to be able to make an informed choice about what they are buying, and it’s impossible for them at the moment.

“The current labelling rules are hiding what people are eating.”

A Government spokesperson said: “It is essential consumers have trust in the food they eat, and food labelling should be accurate and not misleading in any way.

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“We are working with partners to understand the emerging scientific evidence on honey testing to ensure all honey can be fairly and accurately tested for contents and origin.”

The former Belgium PM also took aim at Angela Merkel after Germany’s left-wing parties agreed to form a coalition in the party.

Mr Verhofstadt wrote: “The German coalition deal, Koalitionsvertrag, at times reads not like a weak compromise but more a pre-election party manifesto — and of a party I would vote for.

“The deal clearly gets the basics right: A ‘self-image of a European Germany’ that is ‘embedded in the historical peace and freedom project that is the European Union.’

“Its goal, ‘a sovereign EU as a stronger actor in a world shaped by uncertainty and competing political systems.’

“Its role and responsibilities as a large member country, to go beyond the purely national, ‘for the EU as a whole.’

“This is quite a break from the recent past, where the reasoning was that ‘what is good for Germany is good for Europe,’ and not much more.”

“Its goal, ‘a sovereign EU as a stronger actor in a world shaped by uncertainty and competing political systems.’
“Its role and responsibilities as a large member country, to go beyond the purely national, ‘for the EU as a whole.’
“This is quite a break from the recent past, where the reasoning was that ‘what is good for Germany is good for Europe,’ and not much more.”

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