Thursday, June 8, 2017

Quebec staves off syrup challenge

The Quebec marketing board for maple syrup has staved off court challenges and the president is now inviting the dissidents to come into the fold.

The Supreme Court has refused to hear two appeals from opponents of Quebec's maple syrup rules.

Paul Rouillard, acting director of the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers, says it will now push to have the critics work within the system.

He says it is democratic institution that represents 7,300 maple syrup companies who vote on collective marketing decisions.

Angele Grenier, a maple producer in Sainte-Clotilde-de-Beauce, says she has a "heavy heart" after hearing the high court's decision.

She has accused Quebec's maple syrup federation of being a "monopoly" that could result in Quebec losing its 70 per cent market share to Ontario, New Brunswick and the U.S.

It has, indeed, lost market share and this year decided to try to stem the losses by increasing the number of taps producers can place.

That and good weather resulted in a bumper crop, but whether it was enough to regain market share is yet to be determined.