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Syrup producers across Simcoe County see a boost in business


After being cancelled for the last two years, Maple Weekend is back in Simcoe County, providing an opportunity for syrup producers to connect with clientele.

 Many operators are saying this year's season is off to a strong start.

 "Production has been going wonderful this season," says Tom Shaw, owner of Shaw's Maple Syrup in Oro-Medonte.

Shaw says that Thursday saw the greatest production of syrup this year.

"We got over 5000 gallons of sap in, and we got another 2000 yesterday. This is the heart of when the sap has started to flow this year," he says.

Shaw says business has picked up tremendously this year, compared to reduced levels during the pandemic.

"Now that the restrictions are off and people are more comfortable coming out, we're seeing a lot more people enjoying the trails and the sunshine," Shaw says.

Things have also gotten busier at Drysdale Tree Farm. However, owner Doug Drysdale says they are still struggling with staff shortages.

"I found the second year of COVID was actually harder than the first," Drysdale says. "The first year, everybody was not expecting things and hoping it was going to end, and the second year just kept on going," he adds.

This weekend, Drysdale teamed up with Camphill Communities Ontario for a maple event. The not-for-profit has also felt the effects of the pandemic due to retail providers being closed due to lockdowns.

"We used to sell a lot of our maple syrup at fairs, festivals or markets," says Camphill Community Development Officer Katherine Killam.

However, Killam adds that with restrictions loosened, sales are starting to pick up again.

Maple weekend festivities will continue across the region until Sunday. Both operations say they hope to keep syrup production going for at least a few more weeks, depending on the weather. Top Stories

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