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Thread: *Gauging Interest* Who wants to sell Birch sap?

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
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    Bakersfield, VT
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    I'm intrigued by the birch sap/syrup potential. But I would personally need a lot of confidence in the long term strength of this market before I put a drill to any veneer or even sawlog quality yellow birch. Probably everyone on here has looked at an untapped, veneer quality hard maple and done the calculations in their head. I tend to tap them, even though it kills me, it pays. I might roll the dice on white birch, but yellow birch I really don't think I would.
    4700 hundred taps
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    2- 1.5 hp CDL electric releasers

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Halifax, VT.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rhwells2003 View Post
    Everyone that I've heard that's tried it hasn't liked it. What does it taste like? If it tastes so bad what is the big hype about it? Is it just being used as a natural sweetener?
    If you want to try some you can order a sample size from Kahiltna in Alaska. I have some early season syrup from them and the first time I tasted it I can say I was disappointed. It looks like maple and that's what everyone expects. However, I keep it on the shelf and every so often I'll try a little. I'm familiar with the flavor now and I honestly do like it. It'll never be as good as maple but it does have a fruity flavor that I like. Mine doesn't taste at all like molasses. I think there's a real challenge in making good birch syrup as opposed to maple. I'm sure there's a lot of good attempts out there that don't really cut it and perhaps they tarnish the rep. somewhat. I tried a guys once and if that was my only experience then I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have much interest. Get ahold of BC. Birchtapper on this forum or someone else with experience. Maybe they have some sample sizes.
    Last edited by madmapler; 04-07-2016 at 04:45 PM.
    Sean

    2013-1st year...94 taps, 12x24 sugarhouse, home built evap. Gast 2065 pump with bender
    releaser.
    2014-30x36 sugarhouse, 2.5x10 "Jutras" evaporator, 1200+ taps on vacuum, sap brothers RO. 2 sihi 2 stage pumps, 440 gal.

    2015- 1000gph memtek RO, 3250 Taps, 1200 gallons

    2016- Modified grimm 4'x12' evaporator with auf and aof with air preheater. Home built airtight arch front. 4250 taps?

    2017- 2400gph. Lapierre RO, 10" filter press, 5000 taps

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Bristol, VT
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    Processing it is way trickier than maple. Maple sap has 100% sucrose (until microbes start converting it to glucose and fructose) but birch sap sugar is glucose which burns much more easily. I suspect that much of the birch syrup out there that people have tasted is not properly processed. This is why the RO is key for anything beyond a few taps.
    About 750 taps on High Vac.
    2.5 x 8 Intens-O-Fire
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    Springtech Elite 500 RO
    14 x 24 Timber Frame SugarHouse
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    www.littlehogbackfarm.com

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Underhill Ctr., VT
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    Hi guys,
    Posting this a little late, but here's a link to the results from some of our research on birch production, including sap yields and economics, that might be helpful: http://www.uvm.edu/~pmrc/?Page=birch.html. We're currently working on a project studying the best timing of tapping for birch, and the size of taphole wounds to determine appropriate tapping guidelines - this should be finished and the results posted in the fall. This spring we'll also be starting an experiment to study what syrup processing practices produce birch syrup with the best flavor. If you're interested in tapping birch and have any questions, definitely give me a call or email!
    -Abby


    Abby van den Berg, Ph.D.
    Research Assistant Professor
    University of Vermont
    Proctor Maple Research Center
    Underhill Ctr., VT 05490
    (802) 899-9926
    avan@uvm.edu

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Westford, Vermont
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    Thank you for the information Dr. Abby! I'll be sure to check that out. I had been super excited about making birch syrup, but when I learned more about the potential for season overlap and other details I thought it wasn't for me at this point in time. But I learn forward to learning as much as I can about it. Thanks again.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Underhill Ctr., VT
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    9

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    You bet! The seasons don't necessarily have to overlap - a lot of birch sapflow will occur after the maple season is over, it just appears that some good runs often happen while maple production is winding down. Sometimes it will depend on how much late-season maple syrup you're interested in making.

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