To celebrate sap season in Vermont, we’re shining our Member Deals Spotlight on Shaker Maple Farm! Member-owners can enjoy 20% off their full line of maple syrup products from April 12th – 18th, so it’s a great time to stock up on liquid gold!
Shaker Maple Farm is owned and operated by Steve and Leah Willsey of Starksboro, VT. They have been sugaring for over 30 years and currently boil from 20,000 taps. Many of these taps are from maple trees on their beautiful farm in Starksboro and some taps reside on two neighboring properties from whom they buy sap. In 2013, they completed construction on a beautiful sugaring barn, complete with a small canning facility. Just this year, they signed a new land lease which will allow them to increase to 30,000 taps over the next two seasons!
The 2017 season yielded 10,300 gallons of syrup at Shaker Maple farm. The Willsey’s sell about half of their syrup wholesale and the other half is sold in bulk. You can find their syrup at a variety of local grocery stores, co-ops and restaurants. You’ll also notice that their syrup is certified organic, which may lead you to wonder, “isn’t all maple syrup organic?”. The answer might surprise you! Organic certification ensures that:
- No pesticides or chemicals were used to manage the forest. Like any crop, a forest can be sprayed to control insects. The same organic standards for field crops apply to maple forest to regulate things like buffer zones and runoff and ensure that no fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, or other chemicals were used.
- A healthy forest is maintained. Organic standards limit the number of taps allowed in each tree to sustain the health of the tree. Organic certification ensures sustainable management of forestland to promote tree health, biodiversity, and reduce erosion.
- No lead, filtering agents, or chemical defoamers. Certified organic maple farms must adhere to strict regulation when it comes to things like lead in equipment and the use of filtering agents and chemical defoamers.