Hubbert’s Maple Products is a family-owned maple syrup farm, which started in Canada in 1861. The 1030-acre farm produces maple syrup as well as value-added products such as, maple butter, maple candy, and barbeque sauce and deliver to over 20 retail stores throughout mostly Northern Ontario.
The COVID-19 pandemic has created a shift of the farm’s customer base. The cancellation of maple festivals, closure of the farmers’ markets, and reduction in sugarhouse visits caused a direct reduction in sales of packaged products. During the COVID crisis, the changing buying habits of customers required Hubberts to update their website, change production methods such as, bottling and shipping and find new retail partners.
The Sustainable New Agri-Food Products & Productivity (SNAPP) Program assisted Hubberts Maple Products in modernizing their bottling room facility. This project increased the size of the bottling area and the capacity of product bottling, which helped the farm to recruit new retail partners and keep a safe working environment for employees. These changes allowed the farm to pack syrup more efficiently and expand their business, adding more taps and obtaining Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) registration.
The Sustainable New Agri-Food Products and Productivity (SNAPP) Program is an initiative of the Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN), a division of the Sault Ste Marie Innovation Centre in partnership with the Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance and the Northwestern Ontario Innovation Centre and supports Northern Ontario agriculture and food producers, businesses, collaborations, communities and First Nations to create new products, enhance productivity and adopt clean technology to support improved environmental performance while fostering growth. SNAPP is proudly supported by FedNor.