Mark June 1st on your calendar: the TBL Farmers Market opens on that Saturday.

This year’s group of producers will include a newcomer, Ô de sève, which makes a naturally carbonated maple water and ginger soft drink. Shoppers will have the opportunity to taste and buy this new product throughout the season.

Conceived and produced in TBL by a resident, Marc Côté, who has trained as a brewer and worked on business start-ups for the Brome-Missisquoi CLD, Ô de sève is made with sap from the Côté sugar bush in Fulford. (The “Ô” is a pun on “Eau” and a nod to the family name.)

The first flavour offered will be ginger, to be followed later this summer by a berry version. The aim is to produce a range of flavours featuring local small fruits.

Ô de sève is less sweet than traditional sodas and an alternative to alcoholic beverages like beer, while it also offers the health benefits of maple water. Production will be limited initially to batches of 200 litres, or roughly 500 bottles, and the liquid must be fermented using a so-called ginger bug and matured before it can be consumed.

The makers of Ô de sève believe in sustainable development. In all, some 11,000 returnable 350-ml glass bottles will be produced and marketed the first year. Be sure to visit them and the many other producers at this year’s Farmers Market.

Translation: Brian McCordick