Cold Weather Could Push Back Maple Syrup Harvest

March is a sweet time of year for maple syrup producers getting anxious to tap into some trees. 

Maple farms in Chippewa County hopes from here on out, temperatures stay above zero for their crop.

“Weather speaks as fast as mother nature moves we gotta be right on her heels or ahead of her,” said Woods Foreman, Nathan Moses.

For farms like RMG Maple Products, March is a busy month.

They are tapping thousands of trees, preparing for the harvest, which could be a little late.

“It’s gonna be a little late this year probably two weeks. Our season will start in about a week and a half, it takes us 4 weeks to get tapped so we start early,” said Owner, Mike Ross. 

Last year’s cold hurt production, but they are staying hopeful for this season.

“Our production was down 15 percent because it was a cooler year. As the harvest gets pushed back the odds of having a good harvest are reduced, once you get the warm up it happens all at once and shortens the season,” said Ross.

The farm is happy the weather is finally above zero, so they can get to work.

“Weather looks good, slow warm up is what we want, nothing too fast.”

According to the Michigan Maple Syrup Association — the state ranks fifth in maple syrup production in the U.S.

On average, farms here produce about 90,000 gallons of the sweet stuff every year.