During the day, when warmer temperatures are reached, pressure is created that pushes the water back down to the bottom of the tree, making it easy to collect the maple sap. In the beginning, buckets were used to collect the sap. Now, tubing is used to collect and transported the sap to the sugarhouse where it is boiled down to become maple syrup. As the sap boils and the water evaporates, the sap changes color and thickens. It takes between 30 to 40 gallons of sap to produce one gallon of pure maple syrup. The finished syrup is filtered and packed into containers.
There are different maple syrup grades, light (golden color with delicate taste), medium (amber color with rich taste), dark (dark with robust taste) and very dark with strong taste (formally known as grade B). By the new Vermont standards all syrup is now considered grade A. Sap tapped at the beginning of harvest is generally clearer and lighter in taste. As the season advances, maple syrup becomes darker and more caramelized in flavor. Golden through dark has a good maple flavor and is a good choice for pancakes and a topping for desserts and other foods and is usually made from the maple sap collected at the beginning of the maple season. Very dark robust maple syrup is darker and has a stronger flavor. Very dark robust/grade b is often recommended for baking, but if you are a fan of the maple flavor, this can be a nice choice for a topping as well. To achieve the best possible flavor, we combine our light, medium and dark syrup into one uniform product that is Wild Country Maple Syrup. We also bottle our darkest syrup as Grade B and it is available in 32oz and 1 gallon containers.
Health Benefits of Maple Syrup
Looking for a healthy sugar alternative? Look no further. Pure maple syrup can be used as a healthier substitute for sugar. This healthy sweetener is 100% natural, pure and free of any coloring or additives. Boiled down directly from tree sap, pure maple syrup is an unprocessed, authentic product of nature. Maple tree sap has been used for centuries. Native Americans celebrated the Sugar Moon (the first full moon of Spring) with a Maple Dance and viewed maple sap as a source of energy and nutrition.
The nutrients found in maple syrup include energy, water, protein, fat, carbohydrates and sugar. In terms of minerals, it contains calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus sodium, potassium and zinc. Vitamins such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin and B6 are also found in maple syrup. Maple syrup contains high levels of beneficial nutrients, antioxidants and phytochemicals. Because maple syrup supplies inflammation-reducing polyphenol antioxidants, it is helpful in preventing certain diseases like arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease or heart disease. As a plant based compound, Maple syrup reduces oxidative stress, which is responsible for aging us at a quicker rate and reducing the strength of our immune system. Pure maple syrup contains up to 24 different antioxidants, which help reduce free radical damage that can cause inflammation and contribute to the formation of various chronic diseases. While maple syrup is still considered a food that is high in sugar, it’s lower on the glycemic index score.