An Extraordinary Maple Season

We thought last year was an early start to Maple Season, but this year caught us a little off guard. Our first boil for 2024 was on February 9. That is our earliest boil in our 120 year history and a full eight (8) days earlier than 2023’s record-breaking early start. As Tom tells Tyler Evans at, “Not only is the sap coming earlier than ever before, but the flows are much stronger than they ever used to be”.  As a result, 2024 is shaping up to be an extraordinary maple season. 

A very early start, high volumes of sap, twice as many days boiling in February as we had in 2023 AND a day boiling on February 29th combine to make the 2024 maple season rather unique. Plus, it is just getting started.   

As Tom points out, the early arrival of Maple Season can likely be associated with climate change. While unseasonably warm daytime weather in February might extend the maple season here in Ontario, it could put the season at risk for producers further south if they don’t achieve the necessary nighttime cold. .

"We are still getting cold enough winters and I would like to think that wouldn't change in our lifetime. However, who knows what the next decade will bring."

An Eco-Friendly Industry

As caretakers to over 4,500 maple trees, Shaws have been combating climate change for a very long time. We were an early adopter of reverse osmosis which significantly reduces the fuel consumed in making each litre of syrup. Additionally, we know that keeping the bush in good shape contributes to a healthier planet. 

"Syrup can only come from 40 year old trees. We have trees out there that are 300 years old and have been sequestering carbon all that time which is good for the environment. "

Every year, Shaws makes as much syrup as the trees can safely produce and we sell it directly to the people that come to see us. We don’t export and we don’t sell online. After maples season, our customers can get more Shaws syrup from local retailers like Country Produce and Freskiws. We are a strong supporter of buying local so that other producers can serve their immediate communities and more maple bushes can be sustained. In a world full of change, that’s a tradition we are happy to keep. 

Shaws sugar shack and Pancake House is open 8 am to 4 pm daily until April 14, 2024. Come take a walk through our sugar bush, experience the history of syrup making in Ontario and enjoy the delicious taste of maple. 

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