How to Tap Birch Sap, and Why You'd Want To

Undercurrents/Video screen capture

From building a camping gasifier wood stove from old tin cans to the benefits of foraging (not to mention the potential downsides of wild food), bushcraft and survival skills crop up from time-to-time here on TreeHugger. And it's not just about preparing for an extreme collapse of civilization either. There's just something comforting, and connecting, about knowing that you can obtain at least some of your food and survival needs from the resources you see around you.

Undercurrents/Video screen capture

That's why this video from Undercurrents (found yet again via the ever-excellent Permaculture Magazine) showing how to sustainably tap birch sap is so cool. It reveals a simple, safe and time-tested tradition for obtaining a nutritious "energy drink" from a common tree. Sure, it's unlikely that most of us will spend the time to go out and tap birch sap in the near future, but it sure makes you look around at the natural systems we have all around us and appreciate them for what they are—a treasure trove of valuable resources that we would do well to look after if we want to thrive.

And if you are not sure a nutritious drink full of vitamin C is worth all this effort, then maybe something stronger will persuade you. Head over to Permaculture Magazine to check out Ben Law's recipe for birch sap wine. It is, they say, every bit "as delicious as a good Sauvingon Blanc."

Tags: Biodiversity | Camping | Drinks | Permaculture | United Kingdom

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