Questions & Answers
Frequently asked questions:
Q. Is there a best before or expiry date for Yummies in a Jar?
A. The short answer is No!
Yummies contain a sufficient amount of sugar and/or acids (vinegar, lemon or lime juice) so that the Ph balance of each product falls within the required safety range. On top of that, Yummies are hot packed (the jars are filled while the product is still hot off the stove) into sterilized jars and sealed with sterilized, commercial grade lids. Provided air does not get into the jar, which can happen with either a faulty lid or a lid that has been dinged or damaged, you should be able to enjoy unopened jars of Yummies for years to come!
Note: If you do open a jar of Yummies and see mould on the top of or throughout the product or something just looks off, please do not eat it and throw it out! Although I only make "safe" products, it's better safe than sorry.
Q. I have a jar of Yummies that appears to have crystallized. Is it safe to eat?
A. It is possible that the odd jar of Yummies will show signs of crystallization. This is when sugar crystals form over time, once the jar has been opened and refrigerated, and most often can occur with products that have a higher sugar content, such as pepper or herb jellies.
For over 30 years I have tried to solve this problem by ensuring all sugar is fully cooked and dissolved prior to bottling. Unfortunately, I still hear about a very few jars that have been in the fridge for a while and sugar crystals have formed. It usually occurs just around the rim of the jar but can form further into the product. If you see white sugar crystals forming around the inside of the rim, you can usually re-melt them by warming the jar over hot water or microwaving the jar for a few second (remove the metal lid first!). If the crystallization has developed throughout the jar, I would advise throwing it out.
Please note that I prepare everything in small batches, generally 8 - 10 cups at a time, rather than in huge steam kettles which use liquid sugar. I don't use any artificial preservatives, additives or colourants and natural products don't always behave the way that massed produced products do. On the flip side, I use a ton of fruit, often over a cup of fruit for every cup of jam/jelly, and I think the quality and full flavoured taste of every jar of Yummies speak for themselves!
Feel free to call me to discuss any issues of concern or other questions that you may have or to offer any suggestions.
Lynn Murden, Owner, Yummies in a Jar 705-767-2578, firstname.lastname@example.org