Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple: Producing one-of-a-kind sweet treats with maple syrup

Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple: Producing one-of-a-kind sweet treats with maple syrup
February 20, 2024 97 view(s)
Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple: Producing one-of-a-kind sweet treats with maple syrup

Rachel Courtney is the owner of Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple. Her interest in maple production was piqued at a young age after having a positive and delectable experience hanging out with a local maple producer.

Rachel lives with her husband and daughter on their family’s dairy farm in Mansfield, PA, part of the Pine Creek Valley & PA Grand Canyon Landscape of the Pennsylvania Wilds region. After graduating from college and becoming a freelance graphic designer, Rachel began to produce her own small batch maple products by tapping a couple maple trees on her farm.

A couple taps soon increased to 50, and Rachel started utilizing a homemade evaporator to turn the sap into syrup. Continuing to expand the operation, Rachel and her family constructed a 20’x30’ sugarhouse in 2017 to house the production of Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple syrup. By the 2019 season, the sugarhouse – known as the Sugar Shack – was completed and ready for maple syrup production.

The Sugar Shack is equipped with a reverse osmosis machine that is used to create a concentrated syrup and an evaporator that boils the syrup down to its final form. Expanding year after year, Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple currently has more than 2,500 taps.

If the tap lines stretching from tree to tree or the smell of delicious treats aren’t enough to catch your senses, Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple’s mascot just might. Using her background in graphic design, Rachel created the Sap-Squatch. A twist on the traditional sasquatch, you’ll find this creature giving its seal of approval on almost every Sugar Mama’s Appalachian maple product. 

Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple has collaborated with a number of businesses and breweries to create one-of-a-kind treats with their maple products. Their maple syrup is currently used to create a locally made salad dressing, Kombucha and is in two local craft beers.

Each maple producer is unique, with incredible ingenuity going into making the sugarhouse. Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple is an active member of the Potter-Tioga Maple Producers Association, and is a featured producer during the Annual Potter-Tioga Maple Producers Association’s Maple Weekend hosted every March. In 2023, Sugar Mama’s Appalachian Maple held an open house for Maple Weekend. They were able to demonstrate their methods as well as sell their products.

If you’re planning a visit to the Pine Creek Valley & PA Grand Canyon Landscape of the PA Wilds region in the spring it is a great time to buy maple products, support local businesses and see, first hand, how tree sap becomes a delicious treat. Just remember to keep an eye out for the Sap-Squatch!

Want to taste some of Sugar Mama's Applachian Maple's sweet products? Check them out on her PA Wilds Marketplace storefront here!