|Maple Syrup come from the sweet sugar sap, which is obtained from the sugar maple lasts about six weeks from mid-February to mid-April, depending on the location. When nighttime temperatures are below freezing and daytime wind chill temperatures rise to 35° F or more, the sap begins to run.Ideal conditions for good sap runs occur on sunny days with little wind and temperatures in the 40’s after a night of temperatures in the 20‘s. Maple syrup is produced when the sap of the maple tree is boiled down to the density of syrup. Nothing is added, and only water is removed. It takes approximately 40 gallons of sap from a sugar maple to make one gallon of maple syrup.plastic tubing transports the sap from the trees to gathering tanks. From there it is transported to the sugar house where it is transferred to a central storage tank to feed the evaporator which boils off most of the water, leaving sweet, thick maple syrup.Warm days and cool nights are an important ” Mother Nature” ingredient
As the maple sap flows up from the roots of the maple tree during the warm day, it allows the maple syrup producer, or “sugarmaker,” to “tap the tree.” The process, called tapping, will not harm the maple trees. The process of “tapping” involves drilling a small 7/16″ diameter hole into the tree, at a slight up angle, to a depth of about 2″ to 2-1/2″. Into this hole is driven a “spout or spile with a bucket hook.” The spouts are formed pieces of stainless steel from which sap can flow from the tree into a sap bucket.
It takes, on average, 40 gallons of maple sap to produce one gallon of pure maple syrup. To make quality maple syrup, the sap must be fresh and cold, which means it must be gathered from the sugarbush and boiled often in the sugarhouse. If allowed to collect too long before boiling, it will sour and spoil. Home town folks and farmers with carrying pails collect from each tree and empty the buckets into collecting tanks. The filled collecting tanks of the sweet maple sap are pulled out of the sugarbush by a team of horses, doodlebug or a modern tractor. Traditional postcard pictures show a snow covered forest, with a team of horses, in the sugarbush, with a sap tank in back of them on a wooden sled.
The sweet maple sap becomes maple syrup when the 2% sap, which dripped out of the maple tree into a sap bucket, is condensed by boiling during the evaporation process to the exact density of maple syrup, which is determined using a hydrometer. When the hydrometer settles in the liquid syrup to a mark designating the correct density (Sugar Content), the maple syrup is drawn off, and put through another filter to remove nitre or “sugar sand” which naturally forms during the boiling and evaporation. The fresh processed maple syrup is stored in 35 to 55 gallon stainless steel drums for hot packaging into retail containers later on.
The pure maple syrup is reheated to 185 degrees F. and each jug, can or bottle is packed hot, and sealed according to New England Law guidelines. The grade of the syrup packed and the sugarmaker’s name and address must be marked on each jug, can or bottle. The process of sugaring “making maple syrup” is now complete…! This is the same pure, all natural maple syrup you purchase from on-line and mail-order companies or pick up from your grocer’s shelf, and put into your shopping cart.