The Oneida Indian Nation has announced the creation of its newest business enterprise, Wáhta’ Maple Farm. The maple farm will produce premium-grade, organic-certified maple syrup on Nation lands with a sustainable approach to minimize environmental impact and a commitment to honoring the significance of maple trees and sap in Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) culture.
Oneida Indian Nation Homelands (October 11, 2022) – The Oneida Indian Nation today announced the launch of its newest business enterprise, Wáhta’ Maple Farm. The maple farm will be located on Oneida Indian Nation lands and will create premium-grade, certified-organic syrup in a variety of flavor profiles with a sustainable approach to sugaring that minimizes environmental impact. It will also seek to expand understanding of the rich cultural and historical value of maple trees and sap among the Oneida people.
Wáhta’ Maple Farm will create a traceable product that is grown, processed, and produced on the Nation’s ancestral homelands using small-batch production methods to achieve the highest standard of quality. To support this new enterprise, the Nation will expand its existing maple stock by planting hundreds of new trees on its ancestral homelands. Production is expected to begin next spring. During this time, Wáhta’ Maple Farm will also continue the growth of the Nation’s workforce, the largest in the region, with new seasonal jobs. Revenues generated by the maple farm will contribute to support for Nation Members and Nation programming.
Maple sap plays an important role in Oneida culture. According to tradition, the collaborative effort required to produce maple syrup helps ensure the Haudenosaunee people’s gratitude for this gift. Today, the Oneida Indian Nation continues to honor this tradition with maple ceremonies.
“The maple tree has long held an important place in Oneida culture, and the hard work and partnership required to produce maple syrup reflect the ways in which the Oneida people and our partners have worked together to continue the growth and success of our region,” said Ray Halbritter, Oneida Indian Nation Representative and Turning Stone Enterprises CEO. “We are proud to honor this tradition with Wáhta’ Maple Farm and to continue growing the enterprises that have been so critical to securing a brighter future for Nation Members and all of Central New York.”
Wáhta’ Maple Farm syrup will be available in the spring at SāvOn convenience stores and Maple Leaf Market locations, as well as at Turning Stone Resort Casino, other Oneida Indian Nation properties, and eventually additional retail locations throughout the region.
About the Oneida Indian Nation
The Oneida Indian Nation is a federally recognized Indian nation in Central New York. A founding member of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy (also known as the Six Nations or Iroquois Confederacy), the Oneida Indian Nation sided with the Americans in the Revolutionary War and was thanked by Congress and President George Washington for its loyalty and assistance. Today, the Oneida Indian Nation consists of about 1,000 enrolled Members, most of them living in Central New York.
Joel Barkin, VP of Communications
Kelly Abdo, Director of Public Relations