WASHINGTON—Senator Peter Welch (D-VT) joined Senators Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) to introduce the Market Access, Promotion and Landowner Education Support for Your Regionally Underserved Producers (MAPLE SYRUP) Act last week, legislation extending and expanding the Acer Access and Development Program, which supports maple syrup producers in Vermont and across the United States. Co-Sponsored by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Angus King (I-ME), and Bernie Sanders (I-VT), the bill would also rename the Acer Program to the Maple Research and Market Promotion Program.
“Vermont produces more maple syrup than any other state, and it’s at the heart of our state’s culture, history, and economy,” said Sen. Welch. “I’m proud to introduce this legislation to support our syrup producers and help them continue to produce this world class product.”
“There’s nothing better than real New England maple syrup. For years, I’ve fought to support Connecticut’s small maple syrup producers, and the Maple program is key to helping grow their businesses. I look forward to working with my colleagues to ensure this legislation is included in the upcoming Farm Bill,” said Sen. Murphy.
“New Hampshire maple syrup is not only delicious, but it also plays an important role in our state’s economy and identity,” said Sen. Shaheen. “Investing in our maple industry is critical to its longevity, as well as the success of Granite State agriculture. I’ll work to include this legislation in the upcoming Farm Bill to ensure our maple producers in New Hampshire and throughout New England have the environmental and economic resources they need for their businesses to thrive.”
“This measure is an investment in the hardworking maple syrup producers in Connecticut and across New England,” said Sen. Blumenthal. “The farms, sugar houses, and small businesses that make up the backbone of the industry deserve our support. Expanding resources for research, marketing, and sustainability will put them on a path for success and future growth.”
The MAPLE SYRUP Act would extend and increase authorized funding for the Maple Research and Market Promotion program to $30 million, providing increased support for maple syrup producers through research and education on natural resources sustainability and the marketing of maple syrup and maple-sap products.
To learn more about the Maple Research and Market Promotion program, currently known as the Acer Access and Development Program, please click here. To read the full text of the MAPLE SYRUP Act, please click here.