VAN ETTEN, NY (WETM) – Researchers are celebrating the opening of the newly rebuilt 4,200-square-foot Arnot Maple Research and Teaching Laboratory today. It houses the first new maple product development lab in the country.
The project was supported with $500,000 from New York State to facilitate further growth and innovation in New York’s maple industry. A ribbon-cutting will follow a tour of the new facility, which includes a brand new state-of-the-art commercial kitchen and increased capacity for research and development of new maple products.
The New York maple industry is a critical component of New York’s agricultural economy. New York State ranks second in the nation for maple production, producing 804,000 gallons of maple syrup in 2020. New York is also home to the largest resource of tappable maple trees within the United States and more than 2,000 maple sugar makers. The industry has an annual estimated economic impact of $30 million.
Pure maple syrup has been produced in the Northeastern United States and Southeastern Canada for centuries, and the recipe has remained unchanged: boil sap from maple trees to yield syrup. Methods of tapping trees, collecting and handling sap, boiling the sap to make syrup, making other value-added products, sugarbush management, and other practices critical to the industry have changed, however, as has the technology and the tools available to sugarmakers.