23 Apr What trees can be tapped to produce syrup?
Answer: Alternative saps are becoming more popular for making syrups and other value-added products. Collecting and boiling sap from trees such as black walnuts, birches, and box elders offers a niche product that can have a higher price point than maple syrup. In addition, these maple alternatives can extend the sugaring season, as the sap run from these trees tends to occur later than maples, often hitting its peak when the volume and quality of maple sap starts to diminish. However, the sap yield and sugar content of these trees is typically lower than sugar maples, often making it challenging to have enough sap to support the enterprise economically. For example, a 60:1 sap-to-syrup ratio would not be uncommon for trees like black walnuts and box elders, and a 100:1 ratio for birch trees. The Wild Foodism website provides information on 22 species of trees that can be tapped for making syrup. You can learn much more on this topic in the ATTRA publication Maple Sugaring: An Introduction to Small-Scale Commercial Production. It provides an overview of maple sugaring, including business planning, financial considerations, marketing, equipment and supplies, value-added products, organic certification, regulations, and quality control. It also includes resources for acquiring more knowledge on maple syrup production and determining if maple sugaring is a viable addition to a farming operation.