Four Massachusetts maple syrup producers took honors at the North American Maple Syrup Council’s annual competition, held this year in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania. Sugarmakers from the United States and Canada entered their maple syrup, candy and cream to have them judged based on flavor, color, clarity and density. More than 120 entries were submitted, from 12 U.S. states and Canadian provinces.

Massachusetts came away from the contest tied with Vermont for the most awards of any maple producing state or province. The winners from Massachusetts were:

  • Grade A Golden Maple Syrup: Girard’s Sugarhouse, Heath, 1st place
  • Grade A Golden Maple Syrup: Paul’s Sugarhouse, Haydenville, 3rd place
  • Grade A Amber Maple Syrup: Boyden Brothers Maple, Conway, 2nd place
  • Maple Candy: Windsor Hill Sugar House, Windsor, 2nd place
  • Maple Cream: Paul’s Sugarhouse, Haydenville, 3rd place

“Massachusetts consumers know that when they buy maple products from local sugarmakers they’re getting the best,” said Massachusetts Maple Producers Association Coordinator Winton Pitcoff. “More people are using maple syrup for baking and cooking, and discovering what a delicious and versatile ingredient it is.”

Maple syrup is healthy, too: pure Massachusetts maple syrup is fat-free and all-natural, with fewer calories than most other sweeteners. Pure maple syrup also contains minerals, antioxidants, and amino acids not found in other sweeteners.

There are more than 250 maple sugaring operations in Massachusetts, many of which sell their products directly to consumers at farmstands and farmers markets.