Origin and Destiny: the Remarkable Journey of Quebec Maple

From its ancient uses by First Nations to its Environmental Benefits for Tomorrow, there is a Story to Tell, and a Message to Take to Heart!

LONGUEUIL, QC, Feb. 2, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - Maple Products from Quebec launches its 2016 season by telling the unusual story of maple in a presentation called Origin & Destiny: the Remarkable Journey of Quebec Maple, to an audience of prestigious guests from Quebec, the United States, United Kingdom and India. The evening, a gastronomic and immersive experience, will be punctuated by the release of important research findings on the ecosystem goods and services derived from the Quebec sugar bush, as well as an address from Canada's most accomplished ice explorer, Bernard Voyer.

"The Maple Festival, for the very first time this year, assumes an international character, and it pays tribute to Maple Products from Quebec through specially-created, historically-based dishes that demonstrate the invaluable contribution of maple to Quebec's identity,"said Serge Beaulieu, President of the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers (FPAQ). "We're also delighted to be able to release the results of a study on the impact of the sugar bush on humanity through its contribution of ecosystem services."

Maple Products from Quebec: A Source of Nutritional and Environmental Health

It is already well-known that maple products represent a better health choice when it comes to sweetening ingredients1. Now, in a study conducted by Groupe AGÉCO and released today, the Quebec sugar bush is shown to be more than just the source of these products. It also produces ecosystem goods and services that constitute a considerable source of collective wealth, the value of which is virtually inestimable.

Entitled Evaluation of Ecosystem Goods and Services related to the Quebec Sugar Bush, the study presents a better understanding of the natural capital – present and future – represented by Quebec's maple stand by identifying no fewer than 12 ecosystem services that it generates. These include the filtration of water through the soil, and erosion and climate control.

"The more we develop new markets at home and abroad, the more demand grows for Maple Products from Quebec. This makes us think about the real possibility, in a few decades, that we'll be asked to reforest in the regions, even in cities, to meet demand," said Geneviève C. Béland, FPAQ Director of Promotion, Innovation and Market Development.

Of the 12 ecosystem services that contribute to the well-being of our communities, nine of them can be measured as flowing from Quebec's maple forests. They fall under three internationally-recognized service categories, namely regulation of natural systems, provision and culture.

Maple Products from Quebec are part of our heritage and a form of priceless environmental capital. The estimated annual monetary value of their ecosystem services is $1 Billion. That rises to at least $2.7 Billion when still-unexploited maple resources are taken into account. "If you consider that maple trees now in production are protected by Quebec's Loi sur la protection du territoire et des activités agricoles and those still untapped are sure to offer economic benefits, government protection of the sugar bush is surely justified. The more you buy Maple Products from Quebec, the more you contribute to the protection of Quebec's maple forests and the ecosystem services they provide to the benefit of us all," reasoned Mr. Beaulieu.

A Gourmet Menu that Recalls the Past and Looks to the Future

Three exceptional chefs and a culinary designer have been called upon to create a special menu for this special occasion, one that tells the story of maple—its past present and future—in various eras, from the time of the First Nations to that of New France to the British Conquest, and on to the 21st Century and beyond.

Two chefs (Arnaud Marchand of the bistro boréal Chez Boulay in Quebec City and Guillaume Cantin of the Old Montreal restaurant Les 400 Coups) were tasked with reinventing the past.

Emmanuel Renaut, owner/chef of Michelin Guide triple-starred restaurant Flocons de Sel in Megève, Haute-Savoie, one of the world's top ten chefs according to the "100 Chefs" listing of "Le Chef" magazine (the only world ranking of chefs by chefs themselves), takes maple to the height of "great product of the 21st Century."

Internationally recognized culinary designer Delphine Huguet, founder of Montreal agency Ui, concepteurs de curiosités culinaires, will take our guests to a future world (in the year 2200) with a dessert that perfectly illustrates nature and society in symbiosis.

This trip through time, following maple and its relationship to humanity, reaches back to reveal the vision and respect First Nations have for nature. Today, consumers have the opportunity to contribute to the preservation of our maple stand and to inspire such values in a positive impact on the environment.

"I devote part of my time to expeditionary challenges to the purest places on our planet. I witness the environmental damage caused by humans and that leads me to encourage a great attitude of respect for Mother Nature," says Bernard Voyer, an explorer, mountaineer and public speaker. "I know the importance of the maple forest and its benefits to the environment. The maple tree is our friend; it helps in the challenge that faces us all: climate change. What's more, it's a fundamental part of our heritage. A drop, one single drop…and it's the start of a whole new adventure. Just as it drips from a glacier and gives birth to the greatest rivers of the world, one drop from the maple tree gives nourishment."

About Bernard Voyer

The great Quebec explorer Bernard Voyer is known for having set foot in the coldest and most remote places on Earth. For thirty years, he's travelled the world in quest of bearing witness to its beauty and fragility. His courage and determination have taken him to the North Pole, the South Pole and the summit of Mount Everest. A man who has had the world's great ice caps at his feet, he is without question one of the few explorers of modern times. For more details, go to bernardvoyer.com


About FPAQ and Maple Products from Quebec

Since 1966, FPAQ has pursued its mission of defending and promoting the economic, social and moral interests of 7,300 maple enterprises in Quebec, men and women working together to establish standards of quality and see to the promotion and collective marketing of their products. Quebec is responsible for 90 percent of maple syrup production in Canada and approximately 71 percent of all maple production in the entire world. Together, Ontario, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia account for 10 percent of Canadian production.

FPAQ proudly promotes the Maple Products from Quebec brand and coordinates the marketing and development of Canadian maple products to the world on behalf of the Canadian maple industry. To these ends, FPAQ leads and gives direction to an international innovation network for maple products from Canada.

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1 Study presented at the 7th Congress of the International Society of Nutrigenetics/Nutrigenomics (ISNN), organized by the Institut sur la nutrition et les aliments fonctionnels of Université Laval (INAF), October 7, 2013.

 

SOURCE Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers

Image with caption: "Origin and Destiny: the Remarkable Journey of Quebec Maple (CNW Group/Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160202_C6777_PHOTO_EN_612601.jpg



For further information: Source: Danielle Pépin, Promotions and Communications Officer, Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers, (450) 679-0540, ext. 8539, dpepin@upa.qc.ca; Information: Jeanne Le Cours-Hébert, Massy Forget Langlois Public Relations, (514) 842-2455, ext. 23, jhebert@mflrp.ca

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