Lewis County 1969: Maple Syrup Study
Handy, C.F.; Bratton, C.A.
New York has long been known for its maple syrup and related maple products. These products are produced only in certain areas of the world. They are' delicacies and are used by most people as a specialty food. For New York dairymen, a sugarbush on the farm makes it possible to have a secondary enterprise. In years past, most farmers with a sugarbush made maple syrup. Changes in the nature of farming have had a bearing on the maple enterprise. As dairies have increased in size, some farmers have given up syrup making because of time. New methods used in sugaring require the investment of capital. This immediately brings up a management question, will an investment in new maple equipment pay? Many small sugar operations have been discontinued. However, the maple industry has continued to be important in the State. Vermont for many years was the leading state in maple syrup production. In the past decade, New York has passed Vermont in syrup production a couple of years and has been a close second the other years. Cash receipts from the farm marketings of maple products in New York for 1967 was low and amounted to $1.3 million. This compares with $2.0 million in 1966, $1.8 million in 1965, $2.2 million in 1962, and $2.5 million in 1957. Maple receipts for the nation in 1967 amounted to 5 million dollars with New York accounting for 26 percent of this amount. Maple producers in Lewis County and other areas are confronted with two major management questions. First, does the maple enterprise pay, and second, what might they do to increase the returns from this enterprise? Some cooperators in the Lewis County Farm Business Management Project decided to study the maple enterprise. Nineteen maple producers submitted enterprise records for 1968 and these provide the basis for the study reported here. It is hoped that the information from this study will be of use to producers in making management decisions relating to the maple enterprise.
Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University