LOGO-JWU-Caulinary-Now

Unlocking Maple’s Untapped Potential, Part II

Earlier this summer, JWU Providence’s Food Innovation Design Lab (FIDL) was filled with the irrestistible smell of maple syrup. Six summer interns were working at breakneck speed to push the boundaries of the natural sweetener’s culinary and commercial potential.

Dubbed “The Maple Project,” the monthlong collaboration between JWU, URI’s College of Pharmacy and the Food Innovation Nexus (FIX), a JWU-funded startup, immersed the interns in the world of maple in order to create their own unexpected product concepts.

JWU, FIX and URI Join Forces to Unlock Maple’s Untapped Potential, Part I

If you think of maple as an ingredient at all, there’s a high probability that your first thought is to envision it in syrup form, drizzled liberally over pancakes. But have you ever thought of maple as a hero ingredient? Not only is it truly local — sap-giving sugar and red maple trees are native to North America — but natural products derived from it contain dozens of compounds with potential health and wellness benefits.

Earlier this summer, the Maple Project kicked off as an intensive, interdisciplinary collaboration between University of Rhode Island (URI), JWU and the Food Innovation Nexus (FIX) — a JWU-funded startup housed at the Providence Campus — to examine maple’s potential as a “smarter sweetener” — and to re-frame it as a food that’s not just for breakfast.