March 12th, 2024

By Elise Stefanik


Our incredible Upstate New York and North Country maple producers are hard at work this time of year for maple sugaring season. Tens of thousands of my constituents proudly support maple weekends across our district with their families by visiting local farms, sampling a variety of maple products, and attending nearby pancake breakfasts featuring delicious maple syrup from our NY-21 maple producers.

Agriculture is truly the backbone of our Upstate economy and we are proud that New York is the second highest producing state of maple syrup in the nation. In fact, the North Country is home to two of the top three highest-producing counties for maple syrup in the state: Clinton and St. Lawrence counties. Our dedicated maple producers – most of them family-owned and operated – work incredibly hard to provide delicious products and support our region’s economy.

As the proud Representative of New York’s 21st Congressional District, one of my top priorities is to advocate and support our farmers, including our hardworking maple producers. I am working tirelessly in Congress to help craft a Farm Bill that meets the needs of our farmers and producers. Over the last year, I have hosted listening sessions throughout my district to hear directly from our farmers and producers about their priorities and concerns so that I can elevate them to the highest levels.

In my Farm Bill listening sessions, producers reiterated the importance of supporting specialty crops, including the maple industry. I am working hard to reauthorize funding for the Acer Access and Development Program in this year’s Farm Bill, a crucial competitive grant program for NY-21’s maple industry. I have remained a constant champion of the Acer Access and Development Program, requesting robust funding through Congress’s annual appropriations process to secure research and education resources for the maple industry at institutions such as Cornell University.

I cosponsor the bipartisan Supporting All Producers (SAP) Act to require the U.S. Department of Agriculture to consult with maple producers on where to focus annual research and education priorities via the Acer Access and Development Program. Our maple producers know the needs of the maple industry best and this legislation, which the New York Farm Bureau and the New York State Maple Association supports, would help ensure the Acer Access and Development Program’s resources are used effectively.

This season, don’t miss the opportunity to support our Upstate New York and North Country maple producers by shopping locally for delicious maple products and participating in maple weekends at farms across the state.