forbes maple syrup

Toronto company forced to give away hundreds of maple syrup bottles

If local producers and small businesses don't follow the federal laws regarding the distribution of maple syrup, they can find themselves in a sticky situation.

That's why, for the past few years, Forbes Wild Foods has been giving away its used maple syrup bottles for free. According to Canada's Maple Products Regulations every bottle of maple syrup that has a capacity of five litres (or less) has to be new.

Forbes Wild Foods' marketing manager Dyson Forbes says farmers' market customers regularly return their empty bottles once they're done eating up the sweet, sweet maple syrup inside.

Forbes notes he used to give all of the empties to the Alchemy Pickle Company who would sanitize and re-fill them with kombucha. However, now that Alchemy's growing, it no longer needs the bottles.

"We’re hoping to find some other young entrepreneur or somebody that’s bottling things and could cut down on costs to use them," says Dyson.

Forbes Wild Foods appears at six farmers' markets - including the ones at Wychwood Barns, Evergreen Brick Works and Sorauren Park - and has about 12 boxes of empty one litre bottles and 15 boxes of empty 225 millilitre bottles every two weeks.

Dyson posted about the bottles on Facebook. Hopefully he and his team can continue recycling their empties while helping burgeoning businesses (and following the law!) at the same time.

Lead photo by

Forbes Wild Foods


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