Today on Food Friday, we discuss the sweet treat of maple syrup. Lanore Hahn along with Marian and JP Welch of Justamere Tree Farm in Worthington, Massachusetts join WAMC's Brian Shields to detail all aspects of the maple industry.
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JP and Marian have owned and operated Justamere Tree Farm for 37 years. Beginning as a family hobby in 1986, maple sugaring in their woods with buckets has grown into a 5,000-tap operation, fully powered by solar. They continue to use a wood fired evaporator and an air injection system that ignites all of the gasses released during burning. They harvest trees under a sustainable land management plan, committed to sustaining the health of the forest and their future as sugarmakers. They have embraced the newest technology, including a reverse osmosis system with four high pressure vessels, a steam hood with a preheater and a tubing system that runs 100 percent on vacuum.
In the early '90s Marian and JP made and sold their first batches of Maple Cream, stirring the heated syrup by hand. Thirty years later, they operate two maple cream machines, turning out 60 pounds of cream in a day.
Lanore Hahn is working her second sugaring season at the farm, taking part in all operations from tapping to marketing. She has a degree from Pittsboro College in Nutritional Cooking, a Master’s Degree in Public Health and has focused her career around the production of local food, food access and food equity.
The Massachusetts Maple Producers Association has created a list of recipes and ideas that involve maple syrup.