What are the differences between sap and resin?« Back to Questions List

Sap and resin are terms belonging to the kingdom of plants. Both are secreted by trees and are of great use. Sap is more of a liquid that is less viscous than honey. Resin is a sticky solid form of secretion that is highly valued for their chemical properties and associated uses.

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Sap is made of sugar and water carried in the xylem and phloem cells of the trees. Phloem and xylem tissues perform the transportation of food and water from the roots to other parts within a plant. The phloem  consists mainly of water, hormones, sugar, and other minerals. The xylem sap contains water-mineral elements, hormones, and other nutrients. Tree sap functions to transport vital mineral nutrients and sugars to all living parts of the tree.

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Resin is a liquid found in the outer cells of the trees. When a tree bark is cut, resin oozes out and clogs the broken area preventing any infection caused to the tree. Resin is composed of compounds that are secreted or deposited in the tree. Some resins also contain a high proportion of resin acids. Chemical process called fractional distillation is used to separate individual components of resin.


Resin is sticky, clear and hard while sap is yellowish or white. The main product produced from the sap of maple trees is maple syrup. Molasses from sugarcane sap are used in the production of sugar. Resin is widely used in the manufacture of many things like inks, lacquer, varnish, jewelry perfumes and many other commercial products. What are the major applications of resin?


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