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There’s nothing more satisfying than raking in a good harvest and it almost makes you feel like you can finally take a break from all that farming. But not so fast! You still have to make sure that your harvest stays fresh and preserved for the upcoming months. There are numerous ways of storing your harvest and keeping it fresh, such as freezing, drying, and canning it.

Canning is an age-old practice that was used by farmers to preserve their tomatoes and vegetables at a time when refrigeration wasn’t a service that was easily available. It involves adding produce to a jar and then heating it to a point when the air is driven out from it.

Two Methods

So there are two main methods that are completed through pressure canning and a boiling water bath. You can use a boiling water bath to drive out the air from cans that contain tomatoes, or other processes jams or jellies. This even works for pickles, as long as preservatives are added. The jars containing produce are heated by being completely submerged in boiling water.

Pressure canning, on the other hand, is practiced as a way to store vegetables and other products like poultry. In this method, the jars of food have to be placed in a few inches of water while inside of a pressure cooker. The entire setup is then heated to 240 o F at least.

Which Method to Use

High Acidic Foods

The boiling water bath method works well for high acidic foods like tomatoes and other fruits. These contain a pH that is lower than 4.6.

Low Acidic Foods

Pressure canning is implemented for low acidic foods (vegetables), which have a pH above 4.6. The reason why they can only be preserved this way is due to the growth of Clostridium botulinum, a microorganism that can leave behind deadly spores which thrive in low acidic conditions.

How To

The main difference between both methods is that pressure canning is achieved through a high temperature of the boiling water bath. So you’ll need a special pressure cooker to prepare vegetables using this method.

In both methods, you’ll need clean jars and brand new caps. You need to thoroughly sterilize each jar and keep them in boiling water until you’re ready to store your produce. Whether you’ve added the jars to a pressure cooker, or a boiling water bath, you need to give time until the right temperature is achieved. This is 212 o F for the boiling water bath method.

After removing your jars to cool, listen for a popping sound which indicates that the jars have sealed. You can check this by looking for a depression in the lid. If it hasn’t sealed, you should keep them in the fridge to eat soon.

Should You Try Canning?

While the boiling water bath method is great for preserving pickles, jams and salsas, the same can’t be said for a variety of foods that can be stored by the pressure canning process. If you’re looking to store beans, broccoli or other such veggies, you’ll find that other ways to preserve them, such as freezing, are much more suitable. On the other hand, if you want to store produce using the boiling water bath method only, you can add acidic mediums like vinegar or lemon juice that can keep botulinum from growing. Happy Farming!

More about canning here: Can Do

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Three Tips for Marketing in the Rural US

Marketing in the rural areas of the US presents a unique challenge for marketing teams. Residents of wooded country areas are often less than impressed with modern “gadgets” and are nearly 20% less likely to have access to the Internet in their own homes. So how can you market your necessary products to people in these areas? Since mobile marketing is a relatively ineffective option and social media marketing is a laughable idea, using the three following ideas will help keep your marketing efforts reasonable and down-to-earth – like most of the people you are likely to be targeting.

Keep It Simple

While there are plenty of people who appreciate wild graphics and incendiary special effects, a seasoned tobacco farmer is probably not one of them. Too much unnecessary animation can be overpowering when it comes to a tractor commercial. As a marketer, you have an advantage in this area because simpler marketing strategies are simpler to carry out, not to mention cheaper. Market your product rather than an abstract idea behind it, and you are sure to get a positive response.

Keep It Practical

Rural consumers are often more patient and have longer attention spans than their urban counterparts. You can take advantage of this by making a practical ad that explains your product rather than shows it off. Consumers in agricultural areas tend to find more credibility in information that is useful rather than gripping and fascinating; and this credibility will earn your product and your brand the customer loyalty that will make your business a successful one.

Keep It Local

Much of the influence in close communities, such as those found in rural areas, is through word-of-mouth. Using local media such as the local newspaper, radio, or television station will earn your business more attention than some of the more modern marketing tactics. Also consider that having a local presence as the owner, founder, or leader of your company will lead your targeted consumers to trust you, and therefore your product, more than if you were just a face on a billboard.

While every consumer base is different, these simple tips will get you on your way to building brand value among rural consumers. Keeping it simple, practical, and local will help ensure a positive response. That being said, don’t be afraid to be creative; like every marketing campaign, you want to grab your target group’s attention and hold it. While marketing to rural areas is a challenge, you can still create effective advertising that can earn your costumers’ loyalty and trust.


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