Senators Shaheen, Murphy Introduce Legislation to Support Maple Syrup Producers
(Washington, DC) -- Yesterday, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Chris Murphy (D-CT) introduced legislation to extend and expand the federal maple support program, which supports the U.S. maple syrup industry through research and education, natural resource sustainability and the marketing of maple syrup and maple-sap products. The Market Access, Promotion and Landowner Education Support for Your Regionally Underserved Producers (MAPLE SYRUP) Act would extend and increase authorized funding to $30 million for the federal maple support program, and it renames it the Maple Research and Market Promotion Program. U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Angus King (I-ME), Peter Welch (D-VT) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) co-sponsored the legislation.
“New Hampshire maple syrup is not only delicious, but it also plays an important role in our state’s economy and identity,” said 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 help ensure our maple producers in New Hampshire and throughout New England have the support they need for their businesses to thrive.”
“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 Murphy.
“This measure is an investment in the hardworking maple syrup producers in Connecticut and across New England,” said 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 New Hampshire Maple Producers Association would like to thank Senator Shaheen and Senator Murphy for their work on getting this important bill Included in the Farm Bill,” said Andrew Chishiolm, President of the New Hampshire Maple Producers Association. “Maple production dates back centuries and is an increasingly important agricultural product. As consumers become more aware of the unique benefits of maple, farms across the maple producing states are seeing increased demand for pure maple syrup. Support for maple - is support for our farmers.”
The Farm Bill, reauthorized every five years, funds agriculture and nutrition support programs. Shaheen has long worked to include provisions in Farm Bill reauthorizations to bolster New Hampshire’s maple syrup and other agricultural industries. In March, Shaheen met with maple producers at Mac Hill Maple Farm to hear about issues facing New Hampshire’s maple industry ahead of the upcoming reauthorization of the Farm Bill. In the 2023 Farm Bill, Shaheen is advocating for federal programs that support New Hampshire maple producers as well as other agricultural producers in the state. The 2018 Farm Bill included significant New Hampshire priorities secured by Senator Shaheen, including bipartisan legislation that would extend the authorization of the Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC) for five years and make additional reforms to encourage business retention and expansion in Northern New Hampshire and other distressed communities of the Northern Forest region. In the FY 2022 government funding law, Shaheen supported a $1 million increase for a total amount of $7 million for the federal maple program, which was created in the 2014 Farm Bill to support the maple industry. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Shaheen pushed the Department of Agriculture to help dairy farmers and the producers of specialty crops, which includes key New Hampshire products such as apples and maple syrup.