Sugarin’ at Square Deal Farm
Yesterday some of our grocery team had the pleasure of visiting Square Deal Farm’s sugaring operation. Healthy Living is proud to carry Square Deal Farm’s local, organic and delicious maple syrup! And we love sending our buyers and staff straight to the source to find out how our products are made, to ensure we’re bringing the best possible foods to our customers.
We were able to see the process from start to finish, including checking the lines (the sap is flowing incredibly well this season!).
Checking out the holding tank and pump house:
Square Deal Farm just started using a reverse osmosis machine (RO) this season; a majority of commercial sugarers have switched over to this highly efficient method that cuts down boiling time by a third.
Square Deal Farm also raises pastured pork! These happy pigs were very curious and eager to come over and say hello.
After our tour, it was time to get down to business! Our Lead Grocery Buyer, Chris, even helped clean the boiling tanks. Just about every piece of the machinery has to be cleaned between batches, so Ray jokes that boiling time means cleaning time.
While some sugaring operations use oil to boil the sap, Ray sticks to the traditional wood-fired method. The fire burns hundreds of degrees hot and has to be constantly re-stoked. A neighbor even came by to help load up the wood. Everyone loves hanging out in a sugar house at boiling time!
Yum! There’s nothing quite like the smell of boiling syrup.
Ray constantly checks the density of his syrup to make sure it’s perfect. This is a finely-tuned operation folks! By the way, that monitor on top means that fire is burning at 675 degrees hot!
Enjoying the fruits of our labor – YUM!
Come on in and pick up your very own Square Deal Farm organic maple syrup! Available in our grocery aisles in beautiful glass jars, or in our bulk section. Don’t forget to like Square Deal Farm on Facebook.