Job Files: Maple sugar man

Marketplace Staff Mar 2, 2007


MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: Finally, the beginning of March usually marks the start of maple syrup season in Vermont. Late snows might delay this year’s harvest, but that doesn’t mean we can’t revel in the sounds of a syrup farmer at work on today’s Job Files.

JONATHAN PRYOR: My name is Jonathan Pryor. I’m a maple sugar maker.

I got interested in this business in second grade on a field trip to the sugar house in the town next door.

I convinced my parents that we needed to be doing this at home and we tapped the maple trees on the front lawn. I thought then that it was magic and I still think it’s magic today.

We went out yesterday and we gathered the sap. And all we do is put it in the evaporator, boil most of the water out of it, and we draw it off as finished syrup.

Oh, the best part of this job, when Alex is firing the arch, I can smell the wood smoke coming out from around the door. The combination of just a little tiny bit of wood smoke and the maple is just virtually intoxicating.

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