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advice on sealing jars
Mon 21-Mar-11
11:34 am
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willow spirit
Saaremaa Estonia

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Mon 21-Mar-11
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Hello everyone ūüôā

 

i wanted to ask for a bit of advice. I'm going to start making a selling my own line of organic marmalades, which I'm very excited about smile  I am very happy with my recipes, the labels I'm working, the jars I'm about to order etc but the one thing I'd like some advice/reassurance on is the sealing of the jars. U p until now I've only used sheer muscle to seal the jars. I know there are things you can buy to seal the jars but I was wondering if anyone as every used them?  If I'm selling my products I feel that it is essential that I  am happy with this before I put the on the market.

 

Thank so much for any help wave

Mon 21-Mar-11
11:52 am
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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wave  Hello Fi, welcome to the forum.  I can't help you but someone will surely be along to do so soon.Probably Brightspark or Shelley or Janet.  

I'll try that again!

Mon 21-Mar-11
11:53 am
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brightspark
Wilts

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Hello Fi, and welcome to the forum.

I'm afraid when I make these things, it is a bit of hit and miss, and sometimes my way doesn't always work, so I'm not the best to advise. However, Shelley sells her home-made preserves, and when she comes online, I'm sure she will have the answer for you.

Good Luck and well done, too. ! welldone

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
Don't strive to make your presence noticed
Just make your absence felt"
Mon 21-Mar-11
12:01 pm
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willow spirit
Saaremaa Estonia

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Mon 21-Mar-11
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Gosh, thanks! They were some quick replies smile I've just seen that there is a place I can go and introduce myself so I'll head off there and do the polite thing smile

 

Thanks for the lovely welcome and help.

Mon 21-Mar-11
6:13 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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Thanks for joining in, Fi, and good luck with your venture.

I read through some of my Fi's preserves recipes to see what she does. Here is one that mentions her technique right at the end in the Sterilising section. Just muscle power like you do. I think that, as the jam cools in the jars, it forms a vacuum that effectively keeps the lids on tight.

Never knowingly underfed

Mon 21-Mar-11
6:54 pm
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willow spirit
Saaremaa Estonia

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Thanks Danny. That is the same way I sterilise and seal my jars and it has proved perfect. I suppose, because I want to sell my products I was thinking that I should have a more relient way of ensuring the jars are 100% sealed. then again, if it's not broken maybe there is no need to fix it??!! smile

 

 

Mon 21-Mar-11
7:54 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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willow spirit said:

if it's not broken maybe there is no need to fix it??!! smile

 


 

Yes, I think that is the correct deduction in this case! ok

I would love to learn more about your project. Like how you guarantee "Organic", how you intend to sell them (market stall, retailers, online etc.) and what sort of volume you hope to achieve as regards kilos of oranges in a season? (wow - sorry if all that is too much of an ask!)

Never knowingly underfed

Mon 21-Mar-11
8:46 pm
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willow spirit
Saaremaa Estonia

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Mon 21-Mar-11
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I'm flattered by your interest in our project smile  I'm happy to share with you what we are doing but I'm not claiming in anyway to have any real knowledge or experience as just about everything I've done the past year has been new, as well as setting up my green business, which I'm in the early stages of doing.

 

With organic, not all my products will 100% organic as I will be making natural cosmetics as well as besswax candles and teh food line. I want to incorporate as much local raw ingredients as possible, so for example wild crafted herbs and flowers wont have the organic certification on and neither will the honey and beeswax I'll buy from the neighbour either, unfortunately. The organic certification process is just so stringent, we know this as we are going througn it ourselves right now as we want to be able to use our home grown in our products too. But the certification process here takes up to two years and is tough, which is good but very bureacratic! For my line of marmalades I'll buy in organically ceritified ingredients and tomorrow I'm going to see some authority and check that that alone is enough for me to label them organic. There is no way I can grow oranges here, too cold, i.e.  baltic hahaha   but I just could not help but myself when I saw there was a huge gapping whole in the preserve market here and I LOVE LOVE LOVE marmalade smile But with the exception of oranges, sugar and ginger I am trying to source as much as I can locally for my other products.

In regards to retail, i have some retailers already interested in selling my products both locally and in the capital and when I have my website up and running I'm going to go crazy contacting organic stores in Estonia and Sweden alike (I lived in Stockholm so have connections there). We will also attend a lot of the summer fairs and festivals that are held over teh summer so that we get product exposure. And, lastly I'm considering getting a market stall where I live for the tourist season  and for the first hand contact with custemers so that I can get a real feel for people's tastes and reactions to my goodies smile

 

I have no idea just how much I might sell so I'll just have to wing it and as for harvest hopes, well I'm a newbie in that area too so, hmmm maybe ask me that again in a years time big_laugh I've really gone on and on here sorry! But if you want to know know more or even want a link to some photos from my facebook page you are welcome to let me knwo either here or PM smile

Mon 21-Mar-11
9:06 pm
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Terrier
York

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Hi Fi, welcome to the site, a positive mine of information both useful and useless.

I make sweet and savoury preserves and sell them at car boot sales and craft fairs, along with a few beauty products - currently lemon balm lip balm and eucalyptus sinus rub.

My method is using recycled jars and lids, which are thoroughly washed, jars are then sterlised in the oven for 15 mins at about 150c. The lids are boiled for 10 mins then drained on a clean towel.

I use wax discs on top of everything and then the clear cellophane discs,followed by the screw top lids. both the wax discs and the cellophane discs are dipped in cheap brandy before going on, and I've never had a problem with a blown jar.

Hope this helps. would love to hear about some of your beauty products, I'd like to make a hand cream and a moisturiser using as much natural stuff as possible, ideally with things I grow.

Mon 21-Mar-11
10:17 pm
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brightspark
Wilts

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Oh Janet, you star - well done on that - you certainly are more stringent than I am.

Most of my stuff is virtually given away, or sold - too cheaply probably - because it is just a bit of fundraising for charity. (I ask for donations, mostly.)

In France, I've noticed that in the section where jam equipment is sold, they also sell little wax sticks. I haven't used them, but I presume that is for floating on the surface of the very hot jams, and therefore will seal it.

big_hug

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
Don't strive to make your presence noticed
Just make your absence felt"
Tue 22-Mar-11
6:09 am
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OdelleS
Cleveland,North-East,U.K.

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willow spirit said:

I'm flattered by your interest in our project   


Hello & a very warm welcome, if you gain a tiny little bit from this site it will be time well spent!
 

I, personally think that it's the BEST on-line, there's always some-one that is more than happy to help as I speak from personal experience, I'm always asking things¦..whistle It's a wonder they're not sick and tired of me, probably too polite to say! big_laugh

I agree with all the previous comments as regards to sterilising jars, adding the little circle wax seals and a firm hand with screwing the tops on.

I wish you every possible good luck with your venture.  I don't know if you've heard of Liz Earle? She started off making her own organic, chemical, sodium sulphate free & petroleum based products from her kitchen and now she's won many awards, is in the 'Beauty Bible' and has many features in magazines, so think on this could be you a few years down the line!  Google 'Liz Earle' and I'm sure that you'll be amazed at the accolade that she now has and so deserves, her products are Divine as I'm sure that yours are.  Don't be 'put off' by bureaucracy, you're embarking on a great venture, I'd love to know how you get on so I shall look forward to hearing from you. welldone.

Odelle. wave

Tue 22-Mar-11
7:43 pm
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shelley
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just dropping in after some time away moving house!

 

I too make and sell jams marmalades and sauces here in France; just pocket money stuff really but good fun!  

 

I seal them as per Fiona and then label them as per French regs.

 

Good luck with your new business: I am sure it will be ace!

Wed 23-Mar-11
2:29 am
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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Thank you for that marvelous outline of your project, Fi. The most important thing is that you have a well defined plan. A little tweaking here and there will happen as time goes by but I think you will be successful as long as the locals take to marmalade. If not, just switch you main product line to something that they seem to like.

We love to hear of enterprising people on this forum and you will get loads of support. For example, Janet's (Terrier) use of recycled jam jars. We find that these are a significant factor in productions costs, and often the costliest component.

Odelle - you are such a bright and enthusiastic influence - thank you! big_hug

Fi - worth watching out for Shelley's posts and recipes. She has banged her head against the wall a little (  aargh), learned and carried on. ok

Val (brightspark) has posted some of the best recipes on here. A bit barmy (tongue ), but that adds a certain zest! chef laugh

Never knowingly underfed

Wed 23-Mar-11
5:58 am
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OdelleS
Cleveland,North-East,U.K.

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big_laughWhy thank you kind Sir.....for that compliment!

It's ever so right, they are the most thoughtful, innovative and helpful people on this forum, that's what makes it so special the way in which every-one helps where they can, if they don't know they put a link or suggestion as to where to get the information required, wonderful.

The Forum may have many followers, yet still maintains this friendly, personal approach that makes it so special, which is why we all enjoy it so much, not forgetting the fun and craic that goes on.

I think a huge thank-you  should go out to you, Fiona and every person that contributes to make this so enjoyable and addictive....it should carry a warning! big_laugh wink whistle.

Oh no you're sure to 'get me back for that'! runaway devil smug.

Thanks again Danny,

Odelle. wave

Wed 23-Mar-11
9:43 am
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brightspark
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Danny said:

Val (brightspark) has posted some of the best recipes on here. A bit barmy (tongue ), but that adds a certain zest! chef laugh


 Thankyou your bossness.  whistle 

However, I think Shereen can take some credit on recipes - but mostly Fiona who has inspired a whole lot more people than we realise ! welldone

big_hug

 

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
Don't strive to make your presence noticed
Just make your absence felt"
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