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Canada dips into maple syrup reserve to address shortage

The millions of pounds of syrup that is in the reserve come from years of surplus, when production of maple syrup exceeds demand.

QUEBEC, Canada — Canada's largest private organization that regulates the production and marketing of maple syrup recently announced it would be turning to its emergency reserve in order to address global shortages.

The BBC reports that the Quebec Maple Syrup Producers (QMSP) released roughly 22 million kilograms of syrup from the reserve, which equates to more than 48 million pounds. According to BBC, that's nearly half of what's inside the reserve.

The strategic maple syrup reserve was established in 2000 to respond to these types of situations, QMSP says. The millions of pounds of syrup that is in the reserve come from years of surplus, when production of maple syrup exceeds demand. 

Due to the recent increase in demand and a shortened harvest causing less supply of maple syrup, QMSP said it had to use the reserve for the first time in three years.

"The Global Reserve is therefore serving its important purpose, ensuring a constant supply to the domestic and international markets, regardless the success of any single year’s harvest," QMSP said in a news release. "Furthermore, it stabilizes the product’s price, eliminating variations caused by stock-outs or surpluses."

The reserve is playing a vital role in keeping syrup on the shelves at your local grocery store. That's because Quebec, where QMSP and its reserve are stationed, produces nearly three-quarters of the world's maple syrup. In 2021, 83 million kilograms of maple syrup were produced worldwide, 60 million kilograms of which came from Quebec's forests, according to QMSP.