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Maple Syrups Grades

While buying a Maple Syrup, we all tend to be confused, as to select which maple syrup grade. The grading of maple syrup is done on the basis of color and flavor of the product. The maple sap is harvested mainly in February through April. Vermont in the US and Quebec in Canada are the biggest producers of maple syrup. There are different grading systems in Canada and United States, these are correlated, to the time during the harvest season in which the syrup was made, with lighter varieties made earlier than darker grades.

US Grades of Maple Syrup

  • US Grade AA Light Amber (Fancy), a light amber colored syrup having a mild flavor, usually made from the first brief flows of the season. Considered the highest grade.
  • US Grade A Medium Amber, a medium amber color and pronounced maple flavor. A good general usage syrup delicate enough to be used with subtle flavors but is generally used as a table syrup.
  • US Grade A Dark Amber, a deep color with a flavor likened to caramel. Some find it a bit too strong in flavor for general usage but it can be used like Medium Amber grade.
  • US Grade B, very dark amber, less sweet with a robust, molasses-like flavor recommended primarily for baking. This is the least expensive variety.

Canadian Grades of Maple Syrup

  • Canada #1 maple syrup includes Extra Light, Light, and Medium syrups, all of which can be used on their own. Extra Light, or AA, syrup is best suited for candy, pouring over pancakes and waffles. Light syrup (A), is used to top heartier treats like French toast and cornbread. Medium syrup (B) can also be used for glazing or sweetening.
  • Canada #2 maple syrup, also called Amber or C, is suggested for baking or flavoring.
  • Canada #3 maple syrup, also called Dark or D, is used for commercial purposes only. Possess a characteristic maple flavor and is free from any objectionable odor or taste other than a trace of a caramel, buddy or sappy taste.

Vermont Grades of Maple Syrup

  • Vermont Fancy maple syrup, has a delicately sweet, original maple flavor characteristic of fancy grade. Not darker than the USDA Light Amber Glass Standard, a measured transmission not less than 75.0%Tc
  • Vermont Grade A maple syrup, may have either a flavor more pronounced than that of Fancy Grade, being not strong or unpleasant and flavor characteristic of Grade A Medium Amber, medium amber colored, not darker than the USDA Medium Amber Glass Standard; or may have a flavor stronger than that of Grade A Medium Amber, but not sharp, bitter, buddy or off-flavor and must be of the flavor characteristic of Grade A Dark Amber, dark amber colored, not darker than the USDA Dark Amber Glass Standard.
  • Vermont Grade B maple syrup, possess a flavor stronger than Grade A Dark Amber. Not darker than Canadian No. 2 Amber glass standard.
  • Vermont Commercial maple syrup, has a strong flavor, is not sold, offered for sale, or exposed for sale as packaged maple syrup. Darker than Canadian No. 3 Dark glass standard.
 
 
 
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