Fédération des producteurs acéricoles du Québec
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Classification Back

Quebec is the only jurisdiction in the world that systematically classifies and inspects every barrel of maple syrup produced. Depending on the harvest, this represents between 200,000 and 250,000 barrels a year.

Since 2010, the FPAQ has entrusted classification and quality control operations to an independent organization, ACER Division Inspection Inc., which publishes an information leaflet on the topic.

Color grades, flavor defects, Brix, and volume of Quebec’s bulk classified maple syrup, 2012 to 2014 

 

2012
03/12–02/13

2013
03/13–02/14

2014
03/14–09/14

Pounds

84.6 million
pounds *

106.3 million
pounds **

102,1 million
pounds **

Barrels

194,547

242,629

232,278

Grades

Million pounds *

%

Million pounds *

%

Million pounds *

%

(AA) Extra Light

12.4

14.6

23.1

21.8

13.0

13.2

(A) Light

21.5

25.4

36.5

34.4

27.9

28.4

(B) Medium

22.4

26.5

29.4

27.6

29.2

29.5

(C) Amber

16.2

19.2

12.4

11.7

18.4

18.7

(D) Dark

10.1

11.9

4.1

3.9

8.6

8.8

Noncompliant (NC)

1.8

2.1

0.6

0.5

0.8

0.8

Retained (RE)

0.3

0.4

0.2

0.2

0.5

0.5

Defects

Barrels

%

Barrels

%

Barrels

%

Light flavor (√)

41,035

20.8

34,326

13.9

46,567

20.6

Clarity

10,246

5.1

5,019

2.0

6,572

2.8

Reject flavor (√R)

24,762

12.5

15,701

6.3

25,499

11.2

Retained (RE)

753

0.4

515

0.5

1,200

0.5

Brix < 66.0

9,310

4.4

7,981

3.1

11,248

4.7

Other

Barrels

%

Barrels

%

Barrels

%

Brix > 67.0

47,924

24.7

62,197

25.6

46,916

21.2

Brix from 66.0 to 67.0

137,313

70.9

172,451

71.3

166,042

74.1

* in million pounds
Sources: Cintech Agroalimentaire 2009 and ACER Division Inspection Inc., 2010 to 2014

Application for review

Producers may request a review of their classification.

Producers present during the classification of their maple syrup must apply for review as soon as they know the results, which are provided by the quality control inspector. In this case, the review application can cover all syrup parameters (Brix, degree of light, and flavor defects).

  • Producers who are not present they must apply within 15 working days of the classification. In this case, the review application can only cover flavor defects.
  • In both cases, they must complete the classification review application and pay a $25/barrel fee.

If the review result is better than the initial result, the $25/barrel fee will be refunded. Classification Review Application Form 

Food allergies

Approximately 2 to 4% of the population has food allergies and this proportion doubles among children. To ensure the authenticity, purity, and quality of maple syrup it brings to market, the FPAQ asks each producer to sign a declaration on the annual registration form indicating that they have not used any allergenic products to produce their maple syrup.

All producers who fail to sign the allergen declaration (Section 8: Registration Form) will have their barrels systematically inspected for a list of allergenic products.

Tests are also conducted randomly on other barrels. If any traces of allergen are detected, the maple syrup may be destroyed without payment to the producer. For more information on allergens, see the document entitled.

Food allergies are serious business!

Lead

Barrels are also randomly tested for the presence of lead. Natural traces of lead may occur in maple sap in infinitesimal amounts, which is why there is a tolerance of 0.25 parts per million. If a barrel exceeds this limit, the syrup is automatically withdrawn from the market and destroyed.

The sites of the FPAQ

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