Michigan State University is entering the breakfast fray with its new Spartan Pure Maple Syrup.  The university set aside 70 acres of sugar maple trees inside the Fred Russ Forest for tapping and contracted with the Jones based Maple Row Sugarhouse to tap and process the thousands of gallons of sap needed to make maple syrup.

While Michigan ranks in the top 10 nationally in maple syrup production, only about 1 percent of maple forests are tapped statewide.

Maple Row owner Daniel Olson said the high vacuum system draws on the taps to pull sap from the trees cleaner and more quickly than the traditional gravity fed approach.  Some 120,000 feet of piping connects the taps into a centralized collection system.

Olson said about 1,700 gallons of syrup were produced this year using MSU owned trees.  The MSU Surplus Store, 1344 S. Harrison, currently sells the syrup and more locations are in the works.