Monday, 8 October 2012

Reusing Jam Jars

I heard a lot of twaddle on the radio today about a circular which was being sent round saying that it was against some EU legislation to use old jam jars for preserves which will sell at Fetes, gatherings etc. 

I like the word twaddle, my mother would have sensibly seen the comments as a lot of twaddle, and said so too, loud and clear!  Glass Jars when washed in very hot water, and then dried off in a hot oven for 10 minutes, and then filled with hot jam, are about as safe as anything!  If we are really so very concerned, then all cake baking tins should be brand new each time baking is done.

The talk generally is about recycling, and saving energy, ask any oldies what it was like years ago.  I picked up this lovely postcard at Museum, during the war they knew just how to make the best use of things. 

What could be more environmentally friendly that someone bringing their empty jars, when picking up full ones!  A small group of my friends support my preserving craze and they often get jars of preserves, and are encouraged to return the empties.  I carefully check and clean each jar before reuse, which is exactly the same process as with brand new ones too!  Am I no longer to take jars of preserves for raffle prizes to my gardening club, WI, and other charity evenings?

If I really had to only use new jars, that you be the end of this, as new jars are now costing over £1 each.  Just think of the stupidity of the following:  jars to landfill, or a little less wasteful, and I wonder if anyone has really done a 'cradle to grave' cost on this...send you jar to be recycled:  big lorry to do doorstep collection, well with other stuff too, fuel to take this to a reclying plant, crushing, noise pollution, reforming the jars, transport to wholesalers, then to distributors then to me.  All the lorries on the roads.  Just how many jar miles are there in a new jam jar?

I've just made up a batch of my BACK TO BASICS Seville Marmalade.  After lots of different 'fancy' preserves, I felt like making a really plain marmalade.  Just Organic Oranges, freshly squeezed lemon juice and sugar.  It is in the technique that one achieves perfection.  This preserve is made over three days, and yes it does make a difference!

When we were on holiday hubby bought some preserve at a well known Deli in Arundel and I was shocked to see that additional pectin and jelling agents had been used.  I guess they are needed when jams are transported and buffeted.  I like the fact that my preserves don't contain any such substances, only natural fruit, and sugar.

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