LONGUEUIL, QC (PR NEWSWIRE) - Following a routine inventory check, the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers noted as missing a large quantity of maple syrup held temporarily in the St-Louis-de-Blandford warehouse. An investigation has been placed with the Sureté du Québec (SQ) which immediately secured and began to monitor the area.
In collaboration with the SQ as well as an external auditing firm, the Federation is currently evaluating the scope of the situation. The empty barrels found on site suggest that their contents had been emptied into other containers in view of illegal distribution. In total, the burglarized warehouse held over 10 million pounds of maple syrup amounting to over 30 million dollars in value.
"The Federation always acts with caution to protect producers' harvests. The St-Louis-de-Blandford warehouse had been secured by a fence and locks, and visited regularly," said Mr. Serge Beaulieu, the President of the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers. "The sales agency's maple syrup inventory is spread across several storage locations which were not subject to theft."
Moreover, last March, the Federation acquired a factory in Laurierville to fulfill its additional space requirements to store the agency`s maple syrup inventory. The preparatory work to outfit this warehouse is currently underway. The Federation planned on moving the maple syrup from its temporary storage in St-Louis-de-Blandford over the next few weeks.
The centralization of maple syrup inventory in a controlled space is a way of collectively managing the risks associated with the storage of such a large value of product. The Federation wishes to underscore that all maple syrup inventories in its charge are fully insured. The marketing of the stolen maple syrup will affect the entire maple industry. It is crucial to identify those responsible for this crime.
Quebec is responsible for between 70-80% of the world`s production of maple syrup, and two-thirds of the Canadian production exported to the United States. In addition, several American states saw a very low, indeed catastrophic, harvest during the 2012 season. The Quebec harvest, however, remained normal. The Federation`s maple syrup inventories supply markets during periods of weaker harvests and can, therefore, be considered a global strategic reserve.
The Federation represents some 10,000 maple syrup producers from within Quebec, and is responsible for the administration of the bulk maple syrup sales agency as well as the global strategic maple syrup reserve.