Thunder Bay Maple Supply

Our Production

March 22nd, 2016

This season has been a strange one for our area with a very mild winter and warm temps early in the season, it has a lot of local producers wondering how the season will be.  We were tapped by the end of February and had some early runs with low sugar content.  At our 4500 tap woods the sugar content has yet to improve and we are lucky if we see anything over 1% out of there.  Our other woods has been up and down a few times but the average is about 1.6%.  To date we have made approximately 750 gallons of syrup and processed over 50,000 gallons of sap, giving us an average of about 66 gallons of sap per gallon of syrup.  Glad we have a great RO machine!  Vacuum in the woods stays strong at 27".  With all new equipment this year we knew there would be some kinks to work out of the system, and there was!  Our first boil was a bit stressful when our thermometers were not reading correctly and our sight tube was plugged up.  Rookie mistake on not clearing out the sight tube every so often, but I am honest about our mistakes.  Long story short, we ran the levels too shallow and almost had a big problem.  We recovered well from it and finished out the boil without the use of our thermometers.  Our 2nd boil went much smoother once we tuned in the thermometers and added a modulating draw off.  The modulating draw off is worth its weight in gold!  The second boil we had some problems with our filter press pump, so we had to work through that.  The 3rd and 4th boil we had some troubles with our oil burner shutting down when ever it decided to, but with the help of the guys at the Lapierre factory we got those problems worked out too.  After that it was going great until we had a batch go through that wanted to foam uncontrollably.... But we worked through that and it seems like everything is running relatively smoothly now.  I am hoping that the sugar content will come up a bit so we can bring our ratio down.  Our goal for the season is 2500 gallons of syrup so we have a ways to go.  With season the way it is, I don't know if we will meet that goal, but we are going to try!  
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