After the scare of the 10 day forecast three weeks ago – it looked like it might be the worst sugaring year ever – its turning out to be a solid season both in production and quality. The weather was not quite as warm as they predicted and the trees held on through it to remain very productive through some very good freeze thaw cycles that continue for the next 5 days or so! Then maybe the quality of syrup will tail off and we’ll call it a season.
We’ve made a bit more dark syrup than usual and that seems to be the word from other producers too. In general the sugar content of the raw sap has been very low (perhaps a result of the mild winter??) – but the flavor of the syrup is good. My father actually said “I can understand how some people like dark syrup” after years of blasting dark syrup as inferior. You all probably know that in my mind the Dark syrup is mostly only good for cooking, but to each his own, eh?
I can’t explain how much the sugaring industry has changed over the last 15 years – it really is a totally new beast wrapped in the same thinner and thinner veil of romanticism. This article is an excellent look at the sugaring industry and also at branding and marketing as a whole.
http://www.localfutures.org/thank-you-vermont-a-bittersweet-tale/If you have questions or thoughts please share – I’ll try to explain a few parts of this story in my next note with the season wrap-up three weeks from now….
p.s. If you think Hillary is going to do anything to change the gross direction of capitalist consumption, American imperialism, or anything at all to help the common human being I’d beg to differ. The dream is thin, but perhaps still alive – Please tell all your friends who live in states that haven’t voted yet – “Bernie”