In possibly the sweetest example of sticky-fingered larceny in world history, tonnes of Canadian maple syrup has been lifted from a warehouse in Quebec, which held more than $30m worth of the pancake friendly liquid.
While police say it’s too early to tell how much was heisted from the St-Louis-de-Blandford warehouse, Sergeant Richard Gagné reports “we know that it’s millions of dollars that was stolen”. “It’s a very large amount.”
The heist is a devastating blow to sweet syrup scoffers around the globe, as Quebec allegedly produces around 80% of the world’s supply, the majority of which is sent to the US.
Equally devastated are the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers, who only discovered what is now known as ‘the great Canadian maple syrup caper’ after a routine inspection uncovered empty barrels.
It is believed the shrewd syrup swipers decanted the product into other containers, with the intention to sell it on the black market.
The federation have said if the thieves sell the syrup, the entire industry would be affected. “It is crucial to identify those responsible for this crime,” they said.
Sylvain Charlebois, researcher of food policy at the University of Guelph, said the federation has been working hard to make inroads into the Asia market, where citizens were on the verge of thunderous syrup slurping.
Meanwhile, Anne-Marie Granger Godbout, executive director of the federation, is trying to reassure millions of startled syrup supporters, saying “we still have enough maple syrup, there will be no shortage”.
However, many are wondering why thieves took the trouble to swipe so much Canadian maple syrup. Was it really for reselling, or was there an ulterior motive?
Frank Furter, food and franchise expert into Asia relations, says it’s no coincidence the syrup disappeared whilst Asian demand for the golden treacle is booming.
He says a new Asian craze has developed where people enter a sauna before smothering themselves in maple syrup, only for it to harden considerably before participants engage in full combat toffee wrestling.