SAULT STE. MARIE — Maple syrup producers in the Eastern U.P. got a jump on making the sweet stuff, weeks ahead of when they normally start.
The production usually starts around mid-March for producers in the Rudyard area in Chippewa County.
The warm temperatures of late have the maple trees doing what they are supposed to do next month, that is produce sap.
Due to the early start to the syrup season. R-M-G Michigan Maple Products have already produced 40% of their total output from last year.
In 2023, they produced 78 barrels of syrup. In the last 10 days, the have already have around 30 barrels.
In a good year, they usually expect a solid 120 barrels.
Mike Ross, owner of R-M-G, says the schedule is all up to Mother Nature.
“It doesn’t really matter when it starts, it would be nice for it to have it start with nice sunny 40-degree days and 28- or 27-degree nights. That hardly ever happens. It really doesn’t matter when it starts. It’s just kinda whenever it works,” Ross said.
Ross says the early production will not affect the flavor of quality of the product.