Here’s How This Entrepreneur Built His Own Maple Syrup Business

Joshua Parker started his own venture at age 11 after learning how to make maple syrup on a school field trip. A few years later, he asked his dad to co-sign a loan so he could launch the business for real – and Parker’s Maple was born.

A family business, Parker’s Maple is run by Joshua Parker and his wife, Alessandra Parker. Their maple syrup, maple cotton candy, and maple butter are marketed as a healthier, vegan alternative sweetener as well as an all-American treat made in the U.S.

“They call it a superfood,” Joshua Parker explained why the timing was right for maple. “All of a sudden there were these health articles coming out saying that real maple is good for you, and it’s actually, if you’re going to eat sugar, you should eat maple. … We have the right products at the right time.”

This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

STU: So a few years ago, we had a kid. Joshua Parker who came into the studios back when we were in New York. And he actually started his own company.

GLENN: Joshua, how old were you when you were on the show with us?

JOSHUA: Seventeen.

GLENN: Seventeen.

You started your company in -- at 11.

JOSHUA: Yes. Eleven.

So I started making maple syrup when I was 11, on a school field trip. I went home and bought my own stove. And then actually my grandparents bought me a small evaporator to put in my backyard. And when I was 15, I was like, this is something I can do. If I do it well enough, I want to do it at college. Dad, will you help me?

STU: Good inspiration there.

JOSHUA: And so he said, if the bank is crazy enough to co-sign on a loan, I'll do it -- or, give us a loan, I'll co-sign on it. So we went to a bank. The bank said yes. And we went into business there.

STU: He's really the crazy one there. He's co-signing.

GLENN: How great is it to have a dad like that?

STU: It's awesome.

JOSHUA: It really is. None of this would have been possible without him. So having a dad like that has been amazing.

GLENN: Okay. So you -- you started making real maple syrup. And this is no joke. My son drinks it straight from the bottle. He really does. We get your syrup. When we get it, we can't -- we have to hide it. I swear to you. He's 13, and he sees your syrup, and he's like, oh, my gosh. No, Raphe. No. Those are for pancakes.

STU: That's you.

GLENN: So, anyway, he's your biggest fan. He's your biggest fan.

So you started making the maple syrup. And it went really well. And what's happened since?

JOSHUA: So after I first got that first loan and went into business, I had my first year of making a lot of syrup. And Upstate, New York -- I'm from way up by the Canadian border, where it's maple country.

And in June of 2015, I was actually on the show with you. And so that was really our first big thing, where we all of a sudden got a whole bunch of online orders. And we started to kind of be substantiated as a real national brand.

And so after that, by the end of that year, we're in 500 stores.

GLENN: Unbelievable.

JOSHUA: And so we had grown. And last fall, we went on the show Shark Tank. And there's no deal. And that was okay.

But this year, we've expanded. We've come out with an organic maple cotton candy, a maple butter, which is a delicious spread. And, of course, the maple syrup.

GLENN: Oh, my gosh. Oh, my gosh. Will you please introduce your wife? She's sitting here. Please introduce your wife.

JOSHUA: Yes, yes. So this is my wife, Alee Parker. We got married in January of this year.

GLENN: How old are you?

JOSHUA: I'm 19. And she's 21.

GLENN: You're breaking every rule. This is so great.

STU: Making everyone in the audience feel like failures. I know I do.

GLENN: I know. We do secretly hate you.

STU: Yes. But you brought us cotton candy. So we'll let you in anyway.

And now you're the chief marketing officer for the company?

ALEE: I am. Yes.

GLENN: How did you guys meet?

ALEE: So we actually met at CPAC. I was working for the Ted Cruz campaign.

(laughter)

Yeah.

JOSHUA: But it's just amazing because we really believe -- have kind of bonded over the fact that business is a -- the most powerful platform for ministry. And so we can take these products that God has given us and bring it to the rest of America in new delicious ways. And really be able to -- to change people's lives through business. And so I'm working together this year. We've launched into two regions of Costco, two regions of Whole Foods, Wegmans, and a handful of other retailers. You know, God has just been very, very good to us this year. And it's been an amazing journey.

GLENN: So you're in Wegmans, and who else?

JOSHUA: Costco. Whole Foods. And a few others.

GLENN: Costco. Whole foods too. Wow.

STU: This is about to be in my mouth as well.

GLENN: Yeah. I know. Parkers' maple cotton candy. There's two quotes on here, which I think are great. One hundred fourteen servings -- calories per serving. The biggest serving of the best-tasting 114 calories ever. Mark Cuban said that.

STU: Wow.

GLENN: And then there's another quote, underneath your signature and your little face.

Let's see. When I first produced my first bottle of Parker's 100 percent real maple syrup as an 11-year-old in 2009, I saw the day when it could cover the earth.

Okay. Just most pancakes and waffles in America. Parker's real maple butter and real maple cotton candy soon followed. And I knew it had to be shared. Made from real cane sugar. Real maple sugar. Hope you enjoy the delicious smooth, not too sweet, 100 percent maple cotton candy. Your taste buds will never forget.

Then you sign it. And underneath, it says John 15:5. What is John 15:5?

JOSHUA: Yes. It says I'm the branches -- I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit. Apart from me, you can do nothing.

So it's just -- it's something that when I was 1515 and designed our first package, it was something I put on there. And it was -- it was just -- to me, it was like, this company, there's no reason for my dad to say yes. There's no reason for the bank to say yes. There's no reason for all the people who helped along the way to say yes. And every night, it was just me praying, you know, God, please. Please open this door. I'll do everything I can to make this happen.

And he did. And it was just -- it truly showed that when you are willing to work hard, but also put praying and faith first, there's nothing that God won't open or make happen for you. So...

STU: That's great. You see capitalism be vilified so often. And then you hear things like that. And also you eat things like cotton candy.

GLENN: This is really good.

STU: Oh, my God. I've never had anything like that before.

GLENN: You realize when you're my age, you're going to be fat like me. Because there's absolutely no way -- I used to be skinny like you. I could eat anything. Not anymore.

STU: And I was really impressed with Alee when I first started this. Because she's chief marketing officer -- marketing, this has got to be the easiest job in the world.

ALEE: It is. It is.

STU: Made out of maple syrup. It's really delicious. It has that maple taste.

GLENN: It's really good.

ALEE: Right.

STU: What is it like trying to grow a company like this? I'm always fascinated by these stories. I'm addicted to that podcast, How I Built That? Have you guys listened to that?

JOSHUA: Yes. Yes, I have.

STU: It seems like you should be on it. But just going through and taking it from, hey, I went on a school trip and got maple syrup and figured out how to make it, to get to Wegmans and Costco, what is that process like? And make the answer long so I can eat this.

ALEE: Well, a lot of it is just getting the word out, where we exist. There's so many maple companies already on the market. And what we're trying to do is reinvent the maple industry. We're taking products like maple syrup, and we're making it into maple butter, maple cotton candy.

GLENN: Is maple -- excuse my ignorance. Is maple big around the rest of the world?

JOSHUA: So not around the rest of the world. But the northeast is definitely the wheelhouse of it. And then the rest of the country is beginning to hop on board.

GLENN: Right.

ALEE: And so there's actually a study done by the University of Rhode Island that said that maple is high in antioxidants, has a low glycemic index than most honeys. And they called it a super food. And so we just kind of hit it where I had a passion for real maple. All of a sudden, there's these health articles coming out saying that real maple is good for you. And it's actually -- you know, if you're going to eat sugar, you should eat maple. And so we kind of hit that curve, right at the right time. And we have the right products at the right time. So we've been able to get traction through that. As you said, capitalism is vilified so much. When you look at companies, even some of the ones that you just talked about, that are really good. I mean, Chick-fil-A.

GLENN: Yeah.

JOSHUA: I think that we do a good job of this. I think that there -- like Nature Nate's Honey in Dallas, puts God first. There's a whole list of companies that really do take capitalism and the free market and turn it into something good and benefit people's lives. So that's what --

GLENN: That's what capitalism was supposed to be.

STU: And it is, in a lot of ways.

GLENN: It's supposed to be serving people.

STU: Yeah. You know what I want to do, is I want to take a big handful of this. I want to put it in pancake batter and then make the pancakes with it inside. Have you done this yet?

JOSHUA: I have not tried that yet.

GLENN: He's a food scientist. He'll make you look like a rookie. Thank you so much. Thanks for coming in.

JOSHUA: Yes. Thank you so much.

GLENN: Okay. So if you don't -- give a website for people who don't have it in the grocery store.

JOSHUA: It's ParkersMaple.com. ParkersMaple.com. And, again, it's in Costco and Wegmans and Whole Foods.

GLENN: It's so good to meet you guys. Keep breaking all of the rules.

JOSHUA: Really, I mean, we are married young. So there's hope for millennials. We're really trying to grow this company and work hard to do it. And really, there's hope for America.

GLENN: There is.

JOSHUA: You know, we think if we can inspire other young entrepreneurs and people who maybe don't have what my dad was to me, I think that we can, you know, help the next generation really pursue free markets and free people. So...

GLENN: If my son turns out to be half as focused as you are, I will have done a great job. Your father did amazing -- amazing work. Thank you, both for coming in.

JOSHUA: Thank you.

STU: It is ParkersMaple.com. Josh is on Twitter as well. Josh C. Parker. And @ParkersMaple. Get this food and put it in your mouth. It's very good.

GLENN: Really good.

STU: It's my commercial.

GLENN: So good. My son drinks it right out of the bottle.

STU: He is turning out the same way. Round about way. Maybe he's just trying to fulfill that --

GLENN: What I was drinking right out of the bottle was not from a tree. Was not from a tree.

GLENN: I absolutely love those guys. I mean, Joshua has been on the program before. And please go to -- what was their website?

STU: ParkersMaple.com.

GLENN: ParkersMaple.com. Go there. Really, their maple syrup is unbelievable. It's just unbelievable. And it's all pure and organic and everything else.

This cotton candy is -- I don't even -- I guess you can just order it online, if you don't have a Wegmans. Well, Costco has it. So you'd have a Costco.

STU: I never had anything like that.

GLENN: It's weird. This cotton candy thing is catching on. Remember when we had a Christmas party or something, and a woman was making specialty cotton candy, remember? By our house. It was a friend of a friend. And she makes this cotton candy in all different flavors. So it's starting to catch on. This is the first time I've ever had cotton candy maple syrup. And it's really good. It's really good.

But I just love their story. I love their spirit. And, you know, why boycott when you can do something great and just help them out? ParkersMaple.com.

On the Basis of Sex. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that you probably didn't expect those five words to come out of me this morning. No, that's not my version of a clickbait headline to get you to pay attention — although that probably just happened — but this is the title to the new movie based on the life of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

RELATED: Here's the Problem With the New Ruth Bader Ginsburg Documentary

Progressives and liberals have been hovering over YouTube like a pack of rabid wolves, anxiously awaiting the first trailer to drop. And — three days — they got their wish. Something in the last few seconds caught my ear. Watch:

Now my first thought after hearing that went something like this: The word "freedom" is literally the fifth frigging word in the first sentence of the First Amendment. It shows up for the second time just two sentences later. How do you screw that up? I always assumed that liberal Hollywood movie makers had never really read the Constitution, but this is just sad.

But my second thought was that maybe they don't consider the Bill of Rights actually part of the Constitution. However, according to the National Constitution Center, the Bill of Rights officially became part of the Constitution — not a separate document — when it was ratified in 1791. This is rather easy to fact check, so there's really no excuse here.

But then I had another thought. Either liberal Hollywood forgot that the Constitution changed in 1791, or they actually prefer the vaguer pre-1791 version of the Constitution where God-given rights can be excluded if the state so pleases. Think about it. The Bill of Rights is the single greatest roadblock to the radical Left's "progress." Do you hate the fact that private gun ownership encourages self reliance and personal freedom? Do you also hate the fact that dissenting views, opinions and speech can't be silenced and crushed? Then the Bill of Rights is a clear and present danger to your agenda. It's enemy number one.

The new Left that is radically moving toward the extreme absolutely abhors the year 1791.

You see, the new Left that is radically moving further toward the extreme absolutely abhors the year 1791. They wish it never happened. The Bill of Rights is a constant reminder that some FREEDOMS can't be given by the government, they're granted by GOD. And that thought — you being aware of that — scares the hell out of them.

Now, it's possible I thought too much into this. It's also possible the screen writer made a simple mistake and thought Ruth Bader Ginsburg was actually born before 1791, figuring it would be a nice tip of the hat to her longevity. I can actually see how you could make that mistake. But it's also possible that this is a sign of the times we live in.

The Bill of Rights is under attack, maybe more now than ever. It's never been more important to let the Constitution of 1791 be our guide, true north and lighthouse.

UPDATE: Here's how the discussion went on radio. Watch the video below.

How did this slip by?

The Left has been foaming at the mouth waiting for this movie to drop and when the trailer finally hit the interwebs, it ended with an embarrassing factual error about the Constitution.

What will happen when the Titan kneels?

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

You can tell that the NFL season is approaching because you can hear the whining from highly-paid athletes as they prepare their kneepads for some kneeling.

In May, the NFL instated a policy that penalizes players who take a knee during the national anthem.

RELATED: VIRTUE SIGNALLING: It's time for the NFL to dump the politics

"A club will be fined by the League if its personnel are on the field and do not stand and show respect for the flag and the Anthem," the statement said. "The Commissioner will impose appropriate discipline on league personnel who do not stand and show respect for the flag and the Anthem."

Tennessee Titan's defensive end Jurrell Casey has decided that he will continue his whining and kneeling.

"I'm going to take my fine," Casey said in an interview. "It is what it is, I ain't going to let them stop me from doing what I want to do. If they want to have these battles between players and organizations, this is the way it's going to be."

Maybe Casey can find work elsewhere. I hear that Universities love to hire self-righteous ranting lunatics.

He added that "At the end of the day, we got to do a job, but I will continue to use my platform to keep on speaking up."

Yes, he does have a job to do. And that job is playing football. His bosses have made it clear that political activism is not part of the job. Who knows, maybe Casey can find work elsewhere. I hear that Universities love to hire self-righteous ranting lunatics. There's also Starbucks. They need a self-righteous CEO.

All anyone can talk about right now is Russia and collusion, and for good reason. Special Counsel Robert Mueller just indicted 12 Russian intelligence officers for cyber attacks and the hacking of cyber-systems in energy, nuclear, water, and manufacturing sectors which you can read about here.

RELATED: There are three tribes when it comes to Trump and Russia: Which tribe do you belong to?

The Trump-Russia scandal, in a word, is maniacal. There are many moving parts that are very hard to solve — or simply don't want to be solved. All of these are "mysteries wrapped in an enigma," asserted Glenn on Wednesday's episode of "The Glenn Beck Radio Program."



From the curious case of Imran Awan to the hacking of DNC servers to "Russian" meddling in elections via social media, all of these deserve scrutiny.

On today's episode, Glenn examined seven scandals that make up the Russia connection:

  1. Russian operatives who used social media to divide Americans during the 2016 election.
  2. The meeting at Trump Tower between Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner, Paul Manafort, and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya.
  3. The Fusion GPS Dossier funded by the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
  4. Voter fraud in Illinois.
  5. Hillary Clinton's emails.
  6. Imran Awan. Awan was an IT staffer for Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives who was part of a federal investigation and was arrested on bank fraud charges.
  7. Lastly, the 2016 DNC email leaks.

For the entire explanation, tune into the podcast below:


This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.

When it comes to Donald Trump, Glenn Beck argues that there are three tribes that categorize the way people examine him regarding his foreign and domestic policy.

Tribe one is the #Resistance. They are the ones who believe that everything President Trump does is bad. They're also the ones who call for impeachment and who label President Trump a "treasonous traitor" even before a summit with a foreign leader takes place.

RELATED: Russia hacking Hillary's emails is no laughing matter

Those, according to Glenn's analysis, include groups like Think Progress, who published an article suggesting that women's rights would be rolled back if the President's SCOTUS nominee is confirmed by the Senate. This tribe also includes progressive talking heads and far Left publications and politicians like The New York Times and Hillary Clinton.

Tribe two are those who defend the President and his actions at all costs. He can do no wrong. These are the people who deny the President's mistakes. They believe the President is a master chess player and everyone else is a pawn in Trump's game.

Both who operate in tribes one and two maintain a "win at all costs" mentality. They don't care what happens as long as their side wins. Glenn calls this a "cult of personality madness."

Tribe three are those who are "free thinkers." These people question the President with boldness and aim for intellectual honesty when evaluating the President's policies and behavior.

Glenn believes tribe one and tribe two are smaller than tribe three.

So, what do all these tribes have to do with Trump and the Russians? Find out in the clip below.

Where do you fall when it comes to Trump and Russia?

When it comes to Donald Trump, Glenn argues that there are three tribes that categorize the way people examine him regarding his foreign and domestic policy.


This article provided courtesy of TheBlaze.