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Bruce Bascom

Bruce’s Corner

The U.S. maple syrup industry has adopted the new grading standards effective January 1, 2015. Many states have a one year grace period to convert old labels until January 1, 2016 when the new system becomes mandatory.
At Bascom's we have decided beginning March 1, 2015 to buy all bulk syrup under the new system.
In regards to market predictions for the 2016 season and beyond, it is a consensus of the processors that consumption of pure maple syrup in the U.S. continues to remain strong and perhaps expanding by up to 10% per year. Bulk prices are difficult to predict prior to the crop. A large carryover of unsold U.S. and Canadian syrup originating from two large crops, and the weakening Canadian dollar is putting downward pressure on the drum prices. I predict the prices for the 2016 crop sold in bulk drums will be lower than last year. U.S. syrup sales are very strong and while we have had several very good crops in a row, the maple markets seem to be growing with the maple expansion. I am certain that the maple syrup industry has a bright future.
Bascoms' will take syrup in trade for new or used equipment, for other grades of syrup, or we will buy it outright. We will continue to give prefrence to U.S. origin bulk syrup suppliers. We especially need a greater amount of organically certified syrup, and will be paying a $.20/lb premium for organic syrup over the base price of regular syrup in 2016.
In our continuing effort to obtain syrup of the highest quality, and to minimize any lead contamination we are no longer selling lead soldered galvanized tanks or English tin pans; therefore we will not take these items in on trade. The maple industry must continue to work towards using only maple equipment that present no risk of lead contamination. Maple equipment has been manufactured lead free for about 25 years. If you own equipment prior to this time period we would welcome the opportunity to quote new updated equipment for improved efficiency and food safety.

Bellow is a copy of our policy for those that wish to sell us bulk syrup.

BULK SYRUP DRUM POLICY

In our continuing effort to provide maple syrup of the highest quality, the following policy is in effect:

  • Starting March 1, 2014, maple syrup stored in galvanized drums will not be accepted. 
  • Starting March 1, 2014, Bascom Maple Farms will not be providing free drums.  Producers will need to own their drums.  Bascom’s will no longer have a drum exchange program.
  • If any producer’s drum is lost, Bascom’s will replace the drum with one of equal quality, new or used (i.e. plastic for plastic, stainless for stainless).
  • Continuing with our current practice, only food grade drums of maple syrup will be accepted.  Stainless steel, food grade plastic, and food grade epoxy lined are good examples of what will be accepted.  (No syrup transferred from tin milk cans or any other unacceptable drums will be accepted.)
  • Drums that have previously held non-food grade products (i.e. sanitizers, acids) will not be accepted.
  • Drums that have previously held food considered an allergen will not be accepted.  The “Big Eight” major allergens in the U.S. are milk, eggs, fish, Crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans.
  • Plastic drums that have been labeled “not for reuse” will not be accepted. 
  • We will continue to accept food grade five gallon drums and will continue to charge a five cent per pound deduction.

Syrup drums should arrive at Bascom Maple Farms clean. Drums should be transported in clean vehicles.  We reserve the right to refuse any dirty syrup drums.

Bascom Maple Farms is selling new stainless steel 40, 30 and 15 gallon drums.  We also have available new 55, 30 and 5 gallon epoxy lined steel drums.  The estimated lifespan of a new stainless drum is 25 years with epoxy lined estimated at 3 years.

We’re proud to have some of the best producers in the industry supplying us and as we all raise our standards to grow the maple industry to new levels, we look forward to your continued cooperation.

Best wishes for next season.

Bruce