The old wise tale goes: If Easter is late, so is spring — and the sap collecting season. Jim Adamski says that’s just a coincidence this year.
Adamski and his family operate Adamski’s Sugar Bush in Antigo. They yield up to 6,000 gallons of finished syrup each year.
The 2022 syrup season got off to a slow start, but producers are finding that the weather has turned ideal for a longer season that stretches well into April. Adamski explains temperature is important for maple syrup production because it dictates the sap harvest. Trees use sap as an antifreeze. In the spring, when the weather falls below freezing at night, the sugar stored in the root system of the tree goes up into the branches to protect the tree from cold weather. When the temperatures warm up in the day, the opposite happens — the sugar is pushed back down to the roots. Producers need that freeze-thaw process in order to collect sap.
In other news, Adamski tells Mid-West Farm Report the supply chain proved difficult this year for supplies. He’s had to wait up to 65 weeks for plastic jugs. As far as labor goes, he says automation at the sugar bush makes up for workforce shortages. What matters is that demand for real maple syrup is strong, and people are willing to venture to the farm store to collect the liquid gold.