Maple Syrup Grades
Grade A (with four classifications):
- Golden Color and Delicate Taste: This is a mild and delicate syrup which has a more pronounced golden color. (Grade A Light Amber in the older grading system.)
- Amber Color and Rich Taste: This syrup ranges in amber color (light, medium, or dark) and has a rich and full-bodied taste. (Grade A Medium Amber or Grade A Dark Amber in the older grading system.)
- Dark Color and Robust Taste: Stronger than the lighter color classes, this dark colored syrup has a robust and strong taste. (Grade A Dark Amber, Grade A Extra Dark, or Grade B in the older grading system.)
- Very Dark and Strong Taste: Typically used for cooking purposes or some table use, this is the strongest maple syrup flavor.
- Sugar Substitute: Maple syrup can be substituted for all, or part of the sugar required in any standard recipe. When using maple syrup, simply reduce the liquid in the recipe by 3 tablespoons for each cup of maple syrup used!
- Storage: Unopened containers of maple syrup should be stored in a cool, dry place. Once maple syrup has been opened, it should be refrigerated. For long term storage we recommend freezing.
- Tapping Trees: Only about 10 percent of a tree's sap is collected each year and tapping the trees does no permanent damage. In fact, many sugar maple trees have been tapped for more than 150 years!
- What does it take? To make one gallon of syrup, 30-50 gallons of sap are evaporated. The syrup is then boiled even further to produce maple cream, maple sugar, and maple candy. To produce 8 pounds of maple candy, it takes one gallon (11 pounds) of maple syrup.
- A Sweet Season: Warm, sunny days - and frosty nights create the ideal conditions for sap flow. With the coming of Spring's warm nights and the first stages of bud development on the trees, the Harvest Season ends.
So Good ~ So Little!
Each tablespoon of maple syrup has only 50 calories per serving!
Containing 21 mg calcium, 35 mg potassium, 2 mg sodium, small amounts of iron, phosphorus ~ and a trace of B vitamins.
The Maple Syrup Process
- Maple syrup is made during late February to early March.
- A small hole is drilled into the tree.
- A spout is put into the hole and buckets are used to collect the maple sap.
- The sap is collected, brought back to the farm and put little by little into an evaporator.
- The sap is then boiled on a raging fire to remove the excess water. The sap which is about 2% sugar becomes concentrated to 66% to 67% sugar.
- The syrup is then filtered, tested again for it's percentage of sugar content and is then bottled in various containers to prepare for your purchase.