Old-fashioned cane syrup still a hit - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Old-fashioned cane syrup still a hit

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December 6, 2002

Bronwood- Move over Mrs. Butterworth, and hold on Hungry Jack its time for Grandpa's choice!

The Copeland's grow pecans, and make jellies and jams throughout the year, but at the end of each fall its syrup time.

"I grew up eating sugar cane syrup for breakfast every morning, so I decided I'd bring one of the old ways back," says Farmer Vernon Copeland.

Cane syrup may be pure and simple, but the process isn't. First the Copeland grow hundreds of stalks of sugar cane until November of each year.

Once the cane is harvested it is fed through a machine that squeezes out all the juice, and that liquid flows through a hose to two huge boilers.

"It takes four to four and a half hours before it gets this golden color," explains Copeland. Then the temperature is checked, the syrup is strained again and ready to be bottled.

"There's 17 gallons in the container here, and its really hot," says Sarah Copeland as she bottles syrup.

The Copeland's have customers from all over the country searching for their syrup. "That's the problem, I have to take my sister, my daughter, and my son some, but I try not to share it because its so good. I don't like to share good things," says Hugh Motley, a loyal customer from Akron, Ohio.

While it may take longer and more manpower to make cane syrup the old fashioned way, everyone seems to agree that the results are just as sweet.

The Copeland's say making the syrup has to be enjoyable to them because the rewards aren't so sweet. They sell each 24 ounce bottle for $4.00, but it takes about $3.50 to make it.

Posted at 11:05 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com