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Toby Talbot, Associated Press
FILE-In this Oct. 27, 2011, file photo, bottles of maple syrup sit in a window in East Montpelier, Vt. Vermonters have grown accustomed to their “fancy” “amber” and “grade B” types of maple syrup but new consumers may not be so sweet on the terms. So the country’s largest producer of the pancake topping is thinking of doing away with those terms and adopting new international names with flavor descriptions to help consumers delineate between four different colored and flavored syrups and to match new worldwide terms. The four classifications would be golden color, delicate taste; amber color, rich taste; dark color, robust taste; and very dark color, strong taste.

MONTPELIER, Vt. — Vermont has a long history of maple syrup production and fiercely protects the purity of its brand with grades called "fancy," ''grade A dark amber" and "grade B."

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But other states use different grading terminology. To avoid confusing consumers, it's considering joining with other syrup-producing states and Canadian provinces in a standard grading system. The system would also give flavor descriptions intended to give more information to consumers.

But some Vermont producers worry the state's vaunted brand will lose its reputation if it doesn't stand out from the rest — as they say it should.

The USDA plans to adopt the new terms in 2013. Vermont will hold a series of public hearings this month, and then the state agriculture secretary will decide whether to adopt the standards.