While maple syrup production for 2013 proved to be one of the best crops in seventy years, according to Helen Thomas, Executive Director of the New York State Maple Producers Association, this year's season has been seriously delayed compared to the past couple of years because of the long, arduous winter that has yet to concede to spring. For New York State a typical sugaring season begins in late February or early March and lasts for about 6 weeks. Production requires freezing cold nights and days that are above thirty-two degrees fahrenheit in order for sap to run. Yet, because of the freezing temperatures of late, Thomas reports that most of the state south of the thruway has seen only one-third of the normal crop production.
This has been disconcerting for maple producers who are struggling to push forward with so sluggish and late a season. Last year sap was first collected in New York State on January 1 and last collected on May 1 (on average) according to the United States Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service.
Thomas feels there is no reason to give up hope on the production season saying, “We are of the opinion that this is going to be a short season, but we are still optimistic for an average crop.” She continued on this positive note by stating, “We expect a decent run this week, which should make up for lost time.”