Class of 2022
Interned at Cedarvale Maple Company
3769 Pleasant Valley Rd. Syracuse, NY 13215
Maple Syrup has been being made since before the discovery of America in 1492. And yet new discoveries and technologies are being discovered every day on how to improve the efficiency of producing maple syrup. This summer I had the opportunity to work for Cedarvale Maple Company doing research to improve the efficiency when bottling maple syrup in glass bottles, as well as researching how replacing maple products for other cooking materials affects the consistency of food products. I also was able to help run farmers markets and work the Cedarvale Maple store selling, making, and advertising maple products to work on my business and social skills.
At the start of my internship, I was tasked with learning how to sell and advertise products at a farmers market or while working at the store. This was one of the hardest tasks for me because it requires a level of social skills that I didn’t previously have. After working a few markets, I started learning how to relate to others and talk with all customers. I feel this was a great lesson for me to learn for everyday life.
Next, I worked on cooking with maple syrup and maple products to see how replacing different ingredients affects the final product. This involved a lot of trial and error. The first product I cooked was a maple pecan pie. I was attempting to replace the corn syrup used to make the pie with maple syrup. However, when replacing 100% of the corn syrup the consistency of the pie was too soupy. So after a lot of trial and error, I learned that you could replace about 50% of the corn syrup with maple syrup and maintain a desired consistency for the pie. Some other foods I cooked were maple sugar cookies, maple scones, maple granola, and maple pineapple salsa. Through all the cooking, I learned that maple syrup can replace brown sugar completely, 50% of corn syrup, can be used to add caramelization and can be used as a healthier sweetener. Cedarvale Maple Company then used many of the recipes I developed and posted them on Facebook for their customers and followers
Lastly, I did research on how to improve the efficiency of bottling maple syrup in glass bottles. When bottling maple syrup, the syrup must be bottled at 180-190 degrees Celsius and stay sealed in the bottles at that temperature for 5-10 minutes in order to avoid mold growth. Bottling in glass bottles is trickier because glass has a higher heat capacity so it absorbs more heat from the syrup and so the syrup doesn’t meet the heat requirements when bottled in glass at room temperature. Current government recommendations are to heat the glass bottles prior to bottling the syrup. However, through my research done through my internship, I found that by simply bottling maple syrup in the glass bottles at room temperature and immediately sealing the bottles in a cardboard box together the heat will circulate and keep the syrup at the required temperature for 5-10 minutes. This helps to save time and energy when bottling maple syrup in glass bottles.
I really enjoyed my summer internship because I was able to learn a lot of different skills. I suggest to anyone looking for a summer internship find something where you will constantly be able to learn.