Following one of the worst maple syrup production seasons ever a year ago, Wisconsin's producers more than quintupled their harvest this spring, according to a report early this week by the state's field office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service.
The report put Wisconsin's maple syrup harvest for this year at 265,000 gallons compared to only 50,000 gallons in 2012 and 155,000 gallons in 2011.
This was the state's highest production since data was first collected in 1992.
In addition to the higher sap flow, only 34 gallons of sap were needed to produce one gallon of syrup this spring compared to the 44 gallons required in 2012.
The number of taps increased from 600,000 in 2012 to 740,000 this year. The average yield of .358 gallon per tap was 4.3 times what was collected in 2012.
Reports from producers indicated that the tap season began on February 15, which was 22 days later than in 2012. But the tapping season continued until May 28 compared to April 25 last year.
Tappers indicated that this year's season averaged 29 days compared to only 19 days in 2012.
The average opening date for tapping was March 25 with an average closing date of April 23.
In 2012, the record warmth in March restricted the tapping season to a period from March 8-18 on average, the report noted.
While only 3 percent of the responding producers found the temperatures to be favorable for tapping in 2012, that number jumped to 90 percent this year.
The other 10 percent stated that this spring's temperatures were too cold for favorable tapping.
Another major change from 2012 was the color breakout on Wisconsin's production this spring.
Only 8 percent of the producers reported that their syrup was dark compared to 69 percent in 2012. The respective percentages for the two years were 49 and 27 for medium color and 43 and 4 for light color.
Across the nation, the production trend was similar in the other top nine states (Wisconsin ranked fourth this year) but the percentage increases compared to 2012 were not as great as in Wisconsin.
Vermont continued to predominate in maple syrup production with a harvest of 1.32 million gallons this spring - an increase of 76 percent from 2012.
New York followed with a production of 574,000 gallons this spring while Maine had a 25 percent increase to 450,000 gallons this year.
This year's maple syrup production was 3.253 million gallons compared to 1.908 million in 2012 and 2.794 million in 2011.