How is maple syrup graded?
By color and flavor
Until 2015, maple syrup was either Grade A or Grade B. However, for more discerning palates, the grading system has evolved. The new system provides a better description of each grade of syrup by stating a distinct color and flavor. Don't worry: your favorite syrup hasn't gone away...it just has a different name!
Here are the grades with some information about each:
Grade A: Golden Color with Delicate Flavor (formerly Grade A light amber or Grade A fancy)
- makes a delicious topping for ice cream
Grade A: Amber Color with Rich Flavor (formerly Grade A medium or Grade A dark amber)
- most often used for table syrup; generally accepted by all; also used in salad dressings and to sweeten tea or coffee
Grade A: Dark Color with Robust Flavor (formerly Grade A dark dark amber or Grade B)
- many just plain prefer this heartier flavor, and it is also best for use in cooking (meat glaze, baked beans, barbecue sauce, baking)
Grade A: Very Dark Color with Strong Flavor (formerly Grade C, not commonly sold at the retail level in Michigan)
- this syrup is requested by our customers who are following a cleanse diet or want a very strong syrup to use in some recipes
Nothing is done differently during processing to create the different grades.
They are a natural result of whatever sap flows from the trees at various times during the season.
Which one is best? That's up to you!
INGREDIENTS: Pure maple syrup is a natural food, produced from pure maple sap. Sap is the liquid nutrient in the tree used for growth, and it is the only ingredient used to make syrup.
NO other ingredients, additives, or preservatives are added during the production process.
Maple syrup is a dietary source of Manganese, Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Magnesium, Zinc, Potassium, Calcium, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Iron and Selenium. (Source: USDA Nutrient Database and Canadian Nutrient File)
Pure maple syrup contains ~50 calories per tablespoon, is gluten-free, fat-free, and contains no cholesterol or trans-fatty acids.
In short, if you're choosing a sweetener, pure maple syrup is a great choice for any health-conscious individual!