In the past five decades, winter temperatures in the Northeastern U.S. have risen by 4 degrees F, causing noticeable changes in levels of snow and ice during the slowly shortening winter months. The trend was recently highlighted by 50 scientists in New Hampshire, who wrote an open letter to GOP candidates campaigning in the state, asking them to take global warming seriously.
Along with the impact to tourism and recreation, one of the region’s most culturally-significant products may also suffer from increasingly warm winters: Maple syrup. Producers are noticing shifts in the length of the tapping season, and thus the amount of sugars contained in spring sap dripping from maple trees.
The short documentary film below explores the impact that warmer temperatures are having on this industry. It profiles Martha Carlson, a long-time syrup producer who’s investigating what those changes mean for the future of maple syrup.