How changing temperatures can impact the maple sugar industry

When the weather is too warm, too early, it can end the sap collection season.

WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – One day temperatures are in the 60’s the next it’s below freezing. The 22News Storm Team explains how these up-and-down temperatures are impacting the maple sugar industry.

Ideally, you need cold nights and warm afternoons. As the temperature changes it causes the pressure to change inside the tree, helping the sap flow. However, when temperatures get too warm, like the upper 60s and lower 70s that throws the maple sugar process off.

Sugar houses like Pomeroy’s in Westfield have about six weeks for the sap to flow out of the trees. Luckily, the extreme dip in temperatures this past weekend didn’t have a big impact on their sugaring process.

Randy Pomeroy, from Pomperoy Sugar House said, “This past weekend as brutally cold as it was it was almost like a reset button with the trees, those cold nights pushes the sap back from the canopy back into the root system so once it warms up we get that continuous flow again.”

When the weather is too warm, it could make for an early end to the sap collection season. Overall Pomeroy’s Sugarhouse told 22News the season has been steady so far.