This article is meant to be an introduction to the chemistry of maple sap and syrup: in particular, what makes this sweet liquid maple syrup instead of just a concentrated sugar solution? The types of sugars, the trace ingredients, and the mineral content make maple syrup more than just plain sugar water.
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Questions of how vacuum affects maple sap, syrup and trees have existed for many years, and these issues are perhaps more important today than ever before due to the increasing use of collection systems that can achieve very high levels of vacuum. This article will describe recent research performed at the University of Vermont Proctor Maple Research Center that was designed to answer questions about high vacuum.
A guide to using available Excel spreadsheets to determine profitability and consider the value of altering management practices.