We stopped at Limlaw Family Maple Farm in West Topsham, Vermont during our drive. We called ahead and Bruce & Ruth Limlaw were kind enough to open up for us and give us a tour.
On average, they tap 30,000 maple trees (no that’s not a typo) every year for sugaring season. They have to tap each tree in a different spot every season. Each tree will produce 10-20 gallons of sap, and it takes an average of 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of maple syrup. Bruce said last sugaring season it was closer to 70 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup.
Bruce said the straight sap is almost like water in taste. They use reverse osmosis to increase the sugar content of the sap which reduces the boiling time to create syrup.
After the reverse osmosis process is finished and they have a large amount of concentrated sap, they use a large gas fired arch to boil the sap down to syrup.
It was a learning experience for all us. We enjoyed our visit and of course we purchased some maple syrup.