In our fourth season of Maple Syrup production we have come to appreciate the goodness of our syrup based on the labor-intensive process involved in bringing it to our tables. Our conversation naturally led to what goes into the production of real maple syrup. Unlike mass-produced syrups like Aunt Jemima, we have a product that is pure and direct from Earth. We tap each tree, and connect it to either a 5 gallon jug or one gallon milk jug to collect the syrup. We are thankful to know where our food comes from and relish the taste that much more.
Walking the aisles of my local grocery store I realized that I sometimes throw stuff in the cart without checking labels. Its been years since I bought mass-produced syrup and decided to check the ingredients. I was flabbergasted by the ingredients in Aunt Jemima "Original" Maple Syrup: high fructose corn syrup, water, cellulose gum, caramel color, salt, sodium benzoate and sorbic acid (preservatives), artificial and natural flavors, sodium hexamethaphosphate.
Our syrup has one ingredient: Maple sap.
Over two days we placed about 100 taps in about 85 trees. Day one, even the dogs anticipated the fun, barking and jumping, itching to get going. In the back of the John Deere Gator we have a box of metal taps, a bucket of plastic taps, 1 gallon and 5 gallon jugs (as many as we can carry) a drill, drill bits, nails, and tubing.