From the holding tanks, the sap filters into our reverse osmosis machines. These machines save fuel and energy, and add efficiency to the sugaring process by cutting down on the amount of time our sap waits to be transformed into maple syrup.
Fresh sap is about 2 percent sugar and 98 percent water. Reverse osmosis speeds up the process of reducing the saps’ water content on its way to becoming syrup. The RO machines can remove up to 5000 gallons of water per hour, versus 40 gallons per hour if we used the evaporator alone. Reverse osmosis forces the sap through a semi-permeable membrane, removing half the initial water content.