Sunday, July 11, 2010
Accumulating Jars for Canning...
I was chatting with a man who has taught canning techniques for longer than I've been alive. He works at a big canning supply factory in Oakland CA. Without any provocation on my part he went into a lengthy speech about all of the trouble our nation is in...how quickly a disaster could change our lives...and the importance of storing food and supplies. He sounded a lot like me!
His belief was that next to having food stored...one should have supplies to store more food. Of course the hope with home production is that one can produce more fruits and veggies at home than what the family consumes...enabling excess food to be put away for the future!
He talked about steel suppliers and issues he was having getting in the raw materials to make the lids for the jars. He talked about how the price for the jars and lids had gone up...and he expected them to go drastically up again. He felt like the public should be running to the stores and cleaning the shelves of all canning supplies...while they still can.
After our conversation I have stocked up on some canning supplies here and there. Here is what we have done.
Although we do have a pressure cooker...most of our canning is done in a good ole' ball home canner. I recommend it as a great way to get into canning. It even comes with a canning book that many consider to be like a canning bible.
Both Walmart and Lowes carry canning supplies. From time to time...and when the price is right...I pick up a flat of jars with lids and a few of the little boxes of extra canning lids.
A great way to accumulate some jars is to purchase products that come in canning jars. While most jars aren't standard canning sizes that will fit canning lids...there are some companies out there that do use standard canning sized jars. Classico spaghetti sauces come in Mason jars. You can tell because it actually reads "Atlas Mason" in big print on the side of the jar. I have also seen Walmarts "Good Value" brand come in Mason jars. Specifically...I know that their peach chipotle salsa comes in a Mason jar. To reuse the jar...simply remove the label...and run it through your dishwasher. Then set it aside until you go to can...and use it as you would any other canning jar.
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