Quebec’s maple syrup production quotas came into effect in 2004.
The main objective of production quotas is to adjust the syrup supply based on global demand in order to:
- Stabilize prices
- Foster investments in the maple industry
- Allow maple syrup businesses of all sizes and in all of Quebec’s producing regions to maintain production
All maple syrup and sap produced in Quebec is subject to quotas, with the exception of direct sales to consumers in containers not exceeding 5 liters or 5 kilograms in size.
To prevent quotas from being subject to speculation, they are attached to the sugar bush where production is carried out. Although they have value, quotas cannot be sold separately from the sugar bush.
The interim quota is the producer’s potential production as calculated on the basis of universal criteria applicable to all producers.
The annual production factor is the percentage of annual production applicable to the interim quota, as determined by the board of directions.
The production quota is the producer’s annual quota determined by multiplying their interim quota by the annual production factor.
The temporary quota is a production quota resulting from a sugar bush lease or maple sap purchase. It is added to the production quota.
Growth component: Quota increase without adding taps
Every year since 2011, maple syrup producers whose sugar bush productivity has increased are eligible for the growth component of the interim quota. Producers whose average production for the past three years is 95% of their production quota may therefore qualify for growth.
Growth corresponds to the difference between their average production for the past three years and 95% of their quota, up to a maximum of 25% per year.
To qualify for the growth component, producers must produce their maple syrup using the same number of taps and provide a GPS sugar bush plan prepared by a forestry engineer.
Reduction component: Quota decrease
Every year since 2013, producers whose average production for the past five years is less than 70% of their production quota will see their interim quota decrease.
This reduction corresponds to the difference between 70% of their quota and their average production for the past five years, up to a maximum of 10% per year.
In 2016, the FPAQ wants to establish an annual succession quota allocation program for people age 18 to 40.
The program will allocate 40,000 taps per year.
The entry into force of the succession component is subject to its acceptance by Régie des marchés agricoles et alimentaires du Québec. The FPAQ has submit a formal application to RMAAQ in early 2015.
Increase (or consolidation) component
Depending on market needs, the board of directors may decide that additional quotas can be issued. In 2008 and 2009, for example, quota increases were allocated.
A total of 335,000 increase taps are expected to be issued in 2016, subject to approval by Régie des marchés agricoles et alimentaires du Québec in 2015. Producers will be informed as soon as such approval is obtained.
Depending on market needs, the board of directors may decide that additional quotas can be issued. Accordingly, startup quotas were allocated in 2008 and 2009. A total of 125,000 startup taps are expected to be issued in 2016, subject to approval by Régie des marchés agricoles et alimentaires du Québec in 2015. Producers will be informed as soon as such approval is obtained.
As is the case for maple syrup produced within the production quota, syrup produced over the production quota—called “over-quota syrup”—must be reported and delivered to authorized buyers or the FPAQ.
For crop years below their production quota, producers may transfer the difference between their production quota and production for the year in question, up to a maximum representing 20% of their production quota.
To do this, it is essential that they sign Section 7 of the registration form that they are required to complete and send to the FPAQ each year.