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Érablière Paul Hébert

Maple Syrup Facts

Maple syrup is a simple process, but involves a lot of work to make. There is only one ingredient in maple syrup and that is maple sap from the maple tree. The maple sap contains sugar, but not very much, there are only 2 – 4°Bx (Degrees Brix, or percent sugar) in the sap. Maple syrup is 67°Bx. To get from 2°Bx to 67°Bx all that is needed to do is remove water. However, before the water is removed, the sap needs to be collected. As mentioned before, sap comes from the maple tree. The sap is basically the blood of the tree—it contains sugar and nutrients for the tree to grow. The sap is collected from the tree by drilling a small hole into it called a tap hole. Tap holes are 1 ½” deep and 5/16” in diameter. After the hole is drilled, a small fitting called a Spile is inserted and tapped snugly into place. The Spile brings the sap into a sap collection system. There are two main ways to collect the sap once it is out of the maple tree: sap buckets or plastic pipe line. Maple syrup can only be made in the spring, between the freezing months of winter and the warm days of spring when the tree begins to bud. This time frame is usually between 6 and 8 weeks in length and depending on the year can be shortened into days instead of weeks. For the sap to flow during these short weeks, the weather must fluctuate between freezing temperatures at night and warm temperatures during the day. Once the sap is collected from the Maple Trees, it needs to be processed into maple syrup quickly since raw sap can spoil due to the high level of bacteria it contains. To remove the water from the sap, the sap is boiled in an evaporator. Our evaporator is a piece of equipment containing 2 stainless steel pans. One has a ridged bottom (called a “Flue Pan”), and the other has a flat bottom (called a “Front Pan”). It’s heated by Wood and Natural Gas. The sap starts in the flue pan and flows through to the finishing pan. As the maple sap is reduced in the pans, the boiling point increases. When the sap is finally maple syrup at 67°Bx its boiling point is 7.5°F above the boiling point of water. So if the maple syrup was being boiled at sea level the temperature would be 219.5°F. Once this draw off point is reached the maple syrup is taken out of the evaporator. After the boiling process is complete, the maple syrup needs to be filtered. The most common way of filtering maple syrup is with a machine called a filter press. The filter press consists of many plates with paper filters pressed between them. Diatomaceous earth (DE)o the maple syrup and a pump presses the syrup through the papers. The filters collect the DE and create a super fine filter for the syrup to be cleaned through. At the end of the process the maple syrup is ready to use as a topping or in baking. And it all started with the maple tree.

100 % Pure Canadian

Maple Syrup


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