The Stockton University Maple Grant Team has produced its first batch of New Jersey maple syrup.
Over the winter, the team collected 1,000 gallons of sap from about 90 trees. The sap was boiled down to produce 11 gallons of maple syrup from red maple trees on Stockton’s 1,600-acre Galloway campus.
A group of Stockton professors last year received a three-year, $410,000 grant from the U.S Department of Agriculture to determine whether the red maples that are abundant in New Jersey can produce enough sap to generate a cottage industry in the state.
Stockton is also partnering with private homeowners in the region who are collecting their own sap and providing data for the project.
Landowners must have at least an acre of forested land with at least 10 red maples present to partner in the project. Those with fewer trees can still try a couple of taps next year.
"Even sap collected from a single tree is enough for one or two pancake breakfasts," said Aaron Stoler, assistant professor of environmental science.
Stockton president Harvey Kesselman recently tried some Stockton syrup on pancakes.
“It’s delightful,” he said.