Baroun’s WI Maple Producers of the Year

Jon and Theresa Baroun of De Pere, WI were awarded the Wisconsin MSPA Maple Producer of the Year Award and the Lynn Reynold Traveling Trophy. The WMSPA Producer of the Year Award Criteria are: Person or persons to be selected for this honor should be a paid member in good standing for many years. To be selected for this honor they should be a paid member in good standing for many years. Person or persons of the WMSPA should be a willing part of the association for help and ideas to further its growth. Person or persons should have a good record of helping at WMSPA functions such as; Fall Tour, First Tapping, Winter Institute, IMSI/NAMSC Convention when hosted in Wisconsin, attend meetings regularly, work at the State Fair Booth, and other things
that may come up within the association. Being a delegate or officer is a beneficial part of being
a paid member, but not a requirement of these guidelines.

Carrying on family tradition was the spark that led to a successful 26 years of involvement in the maple syrup industry. The production of maple syrup at Maple Sweet Dairy began 60 years ago. Don and Ev Van Deurzen tapped 50 trees and cooked in a small pan in the woods. However, in 1996, this took a turn for the better. This is when Jon came out to his girlfriend’s to tap a tree in the woods. Little did Jon know that tapping that first tree with his new girlfriend, Theresa, would lead to a lifetime of happiness, success, sweetness, and of course tapping.

In 2006, Maple Sweet Dairy built a new sugarhouse and eventually added a licensed kitchen. In 2020, Jon and Theresa took over the family business. Today, they run over 1,200 taps on pails, tubing, and a solar vacuum system. They still use a wood fired evaporator and recently upgraded to a more efficient wood fired evaporator. Not only do they produce maple syrup, but also honey and many value-added products. They also put a focus on educating both themselves and the public. At the sugarhouse, they hold open houses, field trips, and educational presentations throughout the year.

They are also very involved in the WMSPA. Jon has served as a director and Theresa has served as an executive director for several years. Theresa has recently also taken the position of NAMSC Interim Executive Director. In 2004, they held the WMSPA first tree tapping. Since 1997, Jon and Theresa have worked at the WI State Fair at the Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer’s Association Booth. Together, they have worked to carry on the family tradition by continuing to work with their extended family, friends and also have brought their children into the business.

Their son, Justin, stays involved by helping out during production and by keeping the website up to date. Their daughter, Alicia, stays very involved in the business in all aspects. In 2019, Alicia joined Theresa in their parent company, Maple Buzz ,and they continue to expand the product line. Alicia and Justin also share the love in educating people and themselves about Maple Industry. They both served as WMSPA Maple Marketing Interns in which they promoted, educated people on and helped market the WI maple industry.