Culinary Institute of America students tap maple trees for sap

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The ecology food course at the Culinary Institute of America is educating students about the significance of maple trees.

Professor Deirdre Murphy teaches the students about the ecosystem, specifically the bioregion of the Hudson River, and the food from that area. It's hands-on learning using their very own maple trees on the Hyde Park campus.

"Tapping maple trees is a great way to celebrate spring because maples are the first trees in the forest to wake up,” says Murphy. "I think it actually expands the idea of what the kitchen is. And where the creation of food begins and ends and I think that it's most appropriately seen as a cycle. And part of a much bigger cycle at that."

Many students are grateful for the opportunity they get to learn about the ecosystem.

"For ecology of food, I think it's important to understand where your food comes from…but not only that, it's important to understand how the Earth interacts with itself, with the animals, and their habitat,” says senior Charlotte Szosz.

Another student shared his excitement, saying in part, “…it's really cool to be involved and you know, the harvesting and actually producing of a final product.”

News 12 is told the students will take the collected sap and turn it into the maple syrup many love. On average it takes up to 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup.

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