Making pure Canadian maple syrup in four simple steps.
STEP 1 : TAPPING INTO THE SAP
Maple syrup is made by tapping maple trees with a drill and collecting the sap. The maple sap is very mildly sweet and needs to be concentrated by cooking in order to create maple syrup. Then, a tap is inserted into the hole allowing gravity to do the rest by letting the sap drip slowly out of the tree. It does not hurt the tree nor harm nature in any way.
”Maple syrup is only considered maple syrup when it reaches a sugar concentration of 66% sugar.Brian AllawayOwner, Acadian Maple
STEP 2 : COLLECTING THE SAP
Traditionally this sap was collected by hand and, bucket by bucket was carried by horse and sled to the sugar shack. Today, over 85% of maple producers use a system of vacuum tubes linking the producing trees to a common network to the sugar bush. The tubes carry the sap under the force of gravity down to a pumping station at the lowest point in the sugar bush. This method was introduced in the 1960´s and has tremendously increased the time needed to gather all the same in one place.
STEP 3: EVAPORATION
When the sap is extracted, it is 98% water and only 2% sugar. As mentioned before, in order to be legally considered maple syrup, the sugar content must be between 66% and 68%. The sap is placed in large shallow metal pans and boiled at a constant high temperature of 104°C. The consistency of the temperature is vital in maintaining quality. While it boils, the sap undergoes a series of complex chemical changes that are responsible for the colour and unique flavour of maple products.
STEP 4 : FILTRATION
The syrup is then filtered under gravity or under pressure to remove any impurities. Only then is it ready to be bottled or used to make other products.