Selling Fake Vermont Maple Syrup Will Land You in Prison

Ah, pancakes hot off the griddle, the melted butter ... but if that Vermont maple syrup turns out to be fake, you'd be going to jail.

That's Democratic Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy's promise to protect the state's iconic yummy food product.

Along with Maine Senator Susan Collins, a Republican - who says the bipartisan spirit is dead in Washington? They've come together to protect breakfast!) - Leahy has introduced a bill to make selling fake Vermont maple syrup a felony with a 5-year maximum penalty:

"Vermont iconic maple syrup -- painstakingly produced, and prized across the nation and beyond -- is one of our state's fine, high-quality, natural products," Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy said in introducing the legislation. A growing number of people are claiming to sell genuine Vermont maple syrup when "they are in fact selling an inferior product that is not maple syrup at all,'' he said, adding that the misrepresentation undermines a key part of Vermont's economy. [...]

"Too often, those who are willing to endanger our livelihoods in pursuit of their profits see fines as just a cost of doing business," Leahy said in the statement. "We need to make sure that those who intentionally deceive consumers get a trip to jail, not a slap on the wrist."

The best part about the bill? Its name: Maple Agriculture Protection and Law Enforcement, AKA MAPLE Act: Link (Photo: Shutterstock)

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Representing a product as Vermont maple syrup when it is not, in fact, made in Vermont is fraud. This is both a civil infraction and a crime punishable by law. Why do we need new legislation when existing law will suffice?
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