Pancake house patrons across North America, rejoice! Canadian authorities apparently have recovered a huge quantity of maple syrup stolen from a warehouse in August.
Quebec provincial police and Royal Canadian Mounted Police executed a search warrant last week at an export company in the province of New Brunswick, CNN affiliate CBC reported.
Etienne St.-Pierre, the export company's owner, told the CBC he bought the syrup from one of his regular suppliers, but police hauled it away in trucks. St.-Pierre's attorney, Sarto Landry, said St.-Pierre had no reason to believe the product was stolen, according to the Globe and Mail in Toronto.
‚ÄúWe can‚Äôt easily identify the syrup, it‚Äôs not like buying a car or buying a house,‚ÄĚ he told the paper. ‚ÄúAt the moment, there‚Äôs a presumption that the product that was bought ... was in no way related to a deceitful transaction.‚ÄĚ
It's not known exactly how much syrup was stolen or how much was recovered, but the product originally stored in the Quebec warehouse where the theft occurred was worth more than $30 million, according to the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers.
‚ÄúWe know that it‚Äôs millions of dollars that was stolen,‚ÄĚ the Globe and Mail quoted Quebec police Sgt. Richard Gagn√© as saying. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs a very large amount.‚ÄĚ
The Globe and Mail said the amount seized was 119,000 liters, or about 31,400 gallons, but other Canadian news outlets gave different estimates. Police escorted a convoy of 16 trailer-loads of syrup from New Brunswick to a storage facility in Quebec, the Globe and Mail reported.
Quebec produces 70% to 80% of the world's maple syrup, according to the producers federation.