Canadian maple syrup–pioneer and modern way of making maple syrup with video / A trip to Jack Smythe Field Centre

Written by: 7aum Suvai
Maple syrup is a sweet syrup made with the sap collected from the maple trees. Maple syrup is often used as a condiment for pancakes, waffles, French toast and etc. It is also used as an ingredient in baking and as a sweetener or flavoring agent. Canada and America are the major producers of maple syrup.
Maple syrup and maple candy

Maple candy
Pioneer way of making maple syrup:
  • First nation peoples were tapping maple trees to make a tasty and yummy sweet syrup called a maple syrup.The Native people cut a hole into the trunk of the maple tree and then stuck a piece of wood into the hole.The sap from the tree ran from the trunk into a container.
  • Since they did not have any pots or vessels to heat up the sap, they put hot rocks into the wooden container that holds the sap (Wood chunk carved like a pot as shown in the picture).
  • The hot rocks heated the sap and thickened it. The sweet syrup was then used for cooking food which gave a new flavor to the dish.  Sometimes hot syrup was poured onto the snow which turned it into a sticky and delicious candy.
  • But people who came after the first nations used drills to cut the holes in the trees and had metal taps called "spiles" to drain the sap into tin pails. Also, they had iron pots that they could put over the fire to boil the sap.
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7aumsuvai

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Collecting sap

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Boiling sap 

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Modern day maple syrup:
  • Modern day people did the same things but made the process easier. Due to technological changes, they started using plastic tubing systems where the sap came directly from the tree to the evaporator house.
  • Machines were used to heat up the sap which made maple syrups within few hours of boiling. After which the maple syrups are filtered and bottled. Machines has increased the processing efficiency.


You need 40 buckets of sap to make 1 bucket of maple syrup

Hunted animals


"Farm made" maple syrup and maple candy
Few facts about maple syrup:
  • A maple syrup production farm is called a sugar bush. Sap is often boiled in a sugar shack, a building louvered(horizontal slats that are angled to admit light and air, but to keep out rain and direct sunshine) at the top to vent the steam from the boiling sap.
  • One and only ingredient in making pure maple syrup is the sap that collected from the maple tree. No sugar is added in pure maple syrup as it has natural sweet in it.
  • It takes about 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup because sap is about 97% water and 3% sugar. Maple syrup is made by boiling the sap over a wood fire until it gets thick and syrup like consistency.
  • Collected maple sap looks pure and clear like water, but by heating them up, the water evaporates and turns into a brown sweet syrup called maple syrup. Sap has 97% of water and 3% sugar in it. Where as in maple syrup, it has 66 of sugar and remaining is water.
  • The process of boiling maple sap into syrup is pretty simple but it need lots of patience and waiting time. It approximately takes 6 to 8 hours of boiling.
  • The Canadian province of Quebec and Ontario are by far the largest producers of maple syrup, responsible for 70 percent of the world's output. Vermont is the largest producer in the United States, generating about six percent of the global supply.
  • Maple syrup is graded based on its density and color. Sucrose is the most prevalent sugar in maple syrup. In Canada, pure maple syrups are made exclusively from maple sap collected from maple tree and must also be at least 66 percent sugar.
  • Ontario Maple syrup grading are as follows:
  • Grade A
    Golden Color – For a Delicate taste 
    Amber Color – For a Rich taste
    Dark Color – For a Robust taste
    Very Dark Color – For a Strong taste




    Tapping trees / collecting maple saps are usually done during spring season when the nights were cold but the days were quite warm and sometimes sunny.

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