June 21, 2010
FREDERICTON (CNB) - Maple syrup producers in New Brunswick will receive funding this year to carry out silviculture operations on sugar bush stands, Natural Resources Minister Wally Stiles announced today.
"For the past two years, the provincial government provided $300,000 annually for thinning and spacing of sugar bushes to enhance the health and productivity of maple operations," said Stiles. "I am pleased that $350,000 has been committed this year to continue this important work."
Stiles said the New Brunswick Maple Syrup Association requested additional funding, which will help create employment for thinners now and increase maple syrup production over the long term.
"This is an important and historical industry for New Brunswick and our government is committed to supporting both existing and new producers in the development of their businesses," he said. "We recognize the contribution maple syrup producers make to our provincial economy and we want to see these operations become more productive and profitable."
Funding for the initiative is being provided through the Regional Development Corporation's Total Development Fund.
Thinning and spacing removes unhealthy trees and allows sugar bush stands to grow more quickly and produce higher quality trees.
New Brunswick ranks among the three largest producers of maple syrup products in the world. About 300 operations produce 1.8 million kg of syrup each year, providing employment for more than 2,000 seasonal workers. Syrup and value-added products are sold locally, across Canada and in more than 60 countries around the world.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Matt Jones, communications, Department of Natural Resources, 506-453-2614, email@example.com; Anne Bull Monteith, communications, Department of Natural Resources, 506-453-2614, firstname.lastname@example.org.