How Is Maple Syrup Made?
Maple syrup is made chiefly from the sugary sap that comes from the sugar-maple tree. Late in winter or in early spring, when the maple sap starts to flow. Maple farmers in eastern Canada and the northeastern United States bore tap holes in the trunks of the trees and let the sweet sap drip into buckets underneath.
In some cases, plastic tubing is inserted to convey the sap to the sugar house. The sap is gathered over 12 to 20 days. Each tree produces about 10 gallons of sap, enough to make one quart of syrup.
After harvesting in the maple woods, the sap is transported to a sugar house where, the sap is boiled until it thickens into a delicious, golden-brown maple syrup.
For other maple products – butter, taffy, or sugar – the sweet syrup is further boiled in the evaporator to the temperature necessary to produce the different types of maple products. After evaporation, the finished products get bottled or canned, and are shipped to their final destinations. Now you know how is maple syrup made.
Why is real maple syrup so expensive? The sugaring season (that’s right, it is a seasonal crop) begins at the end of winter and the beginning of spring. When the frozen sap of the maple trees thaws and begins to flow. So while it is expensive, that price is a natural reflection of both its scarcity and its labor-intensive production.