Why Maple Farms Are So Important
At Coombs Family Farms, our journey begins with a tree. In the spring, as the snow begins to fade, we follow the footsteps of our great-great-grandparents and tap maple trees; some that have stood on our land for more than 300 years. Over that span of time, we did more than produce exceptional maple products for people across the country; we embraced the mission of sustainability. As a family maple farm, we are deeply committed to providing sustainability for both our fellow maple farmers and our environment.
From our location in Vermont, Coombs Family Farms has become the largest pure maple syrup supplier in the United States. Within the maple syrup industry, we take on many roles in support of other small independent maple farmers. While we continue to farm our own land and produce our own maple syrup and maple products, we also source maple from hundreds of small family farms that share our vision of sustainable agriculture. This vision includes a focus on high-quality products, environmental protection, and sustainable forestry management.
You may wonder what all this means to you? If you love the taste of maple, buying our products gives you an opportunity to support independent family owned farms. And small farms play a big role in sustainable food production that positively impacts our environment, economy, and our natural resources.
Maple farming and environmental sustainability
Independent maple farms simply could not exist without proper care of our forests. Coombs Family Farms became a steward of the forest in the mid-1800’s and we’ve continued to build on that dedication ever since. In cooperation with a solid network of 8,000 other committed maple farmers, we preserve our maple forests, keep the land free from sprawl, and help protect animals and plant species that need large intact pieces of the forest to thrive.
So, how do we produce our maple products without harming the environment? In our sustainable forest management plan, we adhere to strict tapping standards, and rely on energy efficient technology to minimize our environmental footprint. For example, Coombs Family Farms is the first maple producer to use reverse osmosis, cutting our energy consumption by 75%. We also use low impact vacuum tubing to transport sap from thousands of trees into one large central tank. Not only does this protect the delicate and fragile tree roots, it also allows vegetation to grow freely on the forest grounds since we aren’t travelling by road to collect the sap. We don’t use chemical pesticides and fertilizers and all of our cleaning processes are QAI organic certified to minimize the risk of contamination for our soil, equipment, and groundwater.
Our practices help to ensure that organic maple farms will exist well into our the future, and that our maple trees will still stand for many future generations to come. This is good news for our economy.
Providing educational resources for maple farmers
Many rural economies, especially in Vermont, depend on maple farming. This practice, often passed down through generations of maple farmers, is an important aspect of our community character. And while maple farming is deeply rewarding, it is not easy.
Continued education is essential for the growth of maple farming. Coombs Family Farms offers an annual Open House and free training seminars for the maple farming community. Seminar topics include responsible tree tapping, maple forest management, energy efficient reverse osmosis technology, low-impact vacuum tubing usage, and tips for producing maple sugars and candies that can help boost profit levels.
We believe that if we can help to expand the maple category for our fellow family maple farms, through new markets or new initiatives, we can do our part to strengthen our local economy. This support benefits all of us in the long run, allowing independent maple farms to continue the production of maple syrups and maple products that we love.
Buying real maple syrup from real maple farms
In a world filled with big brands, and food products made from industrial agriculture, it is refreshing to get back to basics. With Coombs Family Farms products, you know that our only ingredient is 100% pure maple syrup. Always remember that real maple syrup will never have any other ingredient; no HFCS, no GMOs, [link to: GetReal HFCS page TBD] nothing artificial. When you buy real maple syrup, you know how it was made, as well as the tradition behind it. Imitation syrups just can’t deliver on that promise.
If you’d like to get to know our maple farmers a bit better, please take the time to meet them . Also please feel free to check out our detailed product pages, or our Maple Kitchen for the latest maple news and recipes. If you’d like to contact us directly with questions, please email us or call us at 888.266.6271.