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Just howling at the moon
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Processing ____ pounds of food by:
Freezing $81.17 for 500 pounds
Canning $31.00 for 560 pounds
Dehydrating $24.29 for 500 pounds
Estimates were done in 2010, still, comparisons make sense, seemed to have been done well.

Excellent comparison! Now I'll feel twice as guilty of freezing things because I'm not saving as much money and I'll work at getting rid of the second freezer.

I don't think I can get rid of the first freezer, because of the meats. I'm not fond of having nuts go rancid, so they go in the freezer. Grain products need some time in the freezer. Homemade stews and soups for lunches go in the freezer. I think it would be difficult for us to go without a freezer.

There is only so much time in the day.
Once I start canning, the equipment stays out for 3 months, and this year I used up all my quart and pint sized cans, which is a lot. Some years it's the water bath canner and some years the pressure canner. I'm going to run the dehydrator again, more, even this winter. Some years I used the freezer more, like very hot summers when I'm not going to can. Some years I use the dehydrator more.

Thanks www!
 

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I'm woundering about the cost of lids, 49 cents a dozen?
Also for freezing, they are not useing Foodsaver type bags.
I have so much loss from freezing food compaired to canning.
 

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I'm woundering about the cost of lids, 49 cents a dozen?
Also for freezing, they are not useing Foodsaver type bags.
I have so much loss from freezing food compaired to canning.
I rarely see lid prices but I think they are around $1.19, so double the 2010 prices.
My electricity bill went up $10/month when I ran it 24/7 for 6 months last year, so more than they are saying, again, those are 2010 prices.
For freezing, I'm using freezer zip top bags, which are probably even more expensive than Foodsaver bags, we use coupons to get them, and often re-use them (which I hear you can do with food saver bags).

I bet we could double all the listed prices from 2010 for 2015, but the canning jars, and we could amortize those over more years than 10.

I still love that article for the comparisons.
 

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Dehydrating for me. Money and space saver. Couple that with the pressure cooker to 'rehydrate' it and it is great.
 

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You could bring the prices down even lower by buying second hand canners and the cheap dehydrators. And instead of using plastic bags to store dried goods you could use canning jars which are reusable and last for decades. And I have to agree that foodsaver bags are better for freezing than regular bags.

ETA, yeah the price of canning lids has really gone up. But then, so has the price of commercially canned food.
 

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Canning lids are close to $3 a dozen here.

Found a receipt from the 13th. Ball regular lids are $2.19, wide mouth are $3.15. Kerr are a bit more.
I believe it, I haven't shopped for them for a couple years now.
Other options:
Reusable Tattler Lids $?
Reusable 4everrecap lids w/gaskets $17 for 24 small mouth, $18 for 24 large mouth
http://4everrecap.com/

I didn't realize there were two kinds of reusable lids, the the 4everrecap ones are only good for 15 times.

I did notice the metal caps are more expensive on Amazon than they are in bulk on ebay, if anyone is shopping around.
 

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I believe it, I haven't shopped for them for a couple years now.
Other options:
Reusable Tattler Lids $?
Reusable 4everrecap lids w/gaskets $17 for 24 small mouth, $18 for 24 large mouth
http://4everrecap.com/

I didn't realize there were two kinds of reusable lids, the the 4everrecap ones are only good for 15 times.

I did notice the metal caps are more expensive on Amazon than they are in bulk on ebay, if anyone is shopping around.


I just bought 3doz regular and 3 dozen wide mouth tattlers last week, in green. With shipping they ran around $56. I'd have to check my receipt to be sure though.
 

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commercially bought food.
SHHHHHH!!!!! You can't admit that! There's some people that believe you should eat and preserve only food that you have grown.

But truthfully, for the vast majority of us, we would starve or have very limited diets if we followed that advice.

I was hoping to see sweet potato prices drop to 19 cents a pound again this fall but that hasn't happened. The cheapest I've seen them is 33 cents/lb. I guess I better buy some. Dh likes mashed sweets. I figure if they're canned they'll be mush when done and all I'll have to do is add butter, cheese and a bit of pepper.
 

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I figure if they're canned they'll be mush when done and all I'll have to do is add butter, cheese and a bit of pepper.
Ours hold together pretty well canned. Soft, fairly easy to mash, but not mush.

Looking over the prices on the website listed in the OP, they must have taken them from the mid 80's, not 2010.

Electricity at 5 cents/kwhr ? Been 8-9 cents for 10years or more.

Jars at $4.39/dz ? Really ? I bought a whole pallet of them 10-12 years back and they were almost 8 bucks/dozen then. Haven't seen them under that since, even on clearance.

Lids at 49 cents/dz ? 20 years ago, maybe.....

Cheapest place I know of on lids is Goodmans.net, if you buy 36 dozen, they are 65.29 (+shipping), or around $2/bx.....and have been for years, and I've been buying there from them for many years.

The pricing really needs updating.
 

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Do you always rehydrate your dried food before using it? I almost never do so for my case, no, rehydration costs wouldn't be included.

TNAndy, thanks for that info. I've heard from a lot of people that they turn to mush when canned. Soft is okay.
 

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Great thread, thank you for starting it. I quit using the freezer after I lost a deer the second time. Besides my canned goods look great in my open country pantry!
 

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SHHHHHH!!!!! You can't admit that! There's some people that believe you should eat and preserve only food that you have grown.
Ooops! Did I admit that out loud? LOL! Yes, we buy all kinds of things commercially canned and meat too. I try to limit junk food and preservatives and unhealthy things, but we'll be glad for mac and glow in the dark cheese powder if we can't get to a store.
 

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Interesting article. I think one can reduce some of those numbers to zero. As dehydrating. I'm dying to build a solar dehydrator with lots of drawers. That could be built free from recycle materials.

As for canning, I have free gas at my home and reuse any store bought jars with popup lids. Never had an issue. I also reuse my lids if they look good. Again, never had an issue. I get boxes of jars at sales for few bucks a dozen, if not free. I don't think I need anymore in my lifetime.

My main expense when canning is vinegar, salt and sugar. I don't even buy pectin. I use crabapple juice instead. Or usually just freeze my berries whole. I make vinegar but it's not strong to trust it for canning.

My chest freezer cost 2-3$ a month to run. I know because it was the only thing hooked on the new house electric for a few months.

I love the freezer as many things are better frozen like my peas, sugar snap peas, corn, Brussels sprouts, meat and rhubarb. Plus freezer helps hold things like tomatoes until I can get to them when canning gets put off.

My favorite thing about canning is I like firm organic veggies. Canned from the store are mushy over processed. I can mine firm. Also love my own family hot pepper recipe. Can't buy those at the store lol. I do buy store frozen bags of peas, 1$ a bag. Can't seem to grow enough of them. Lol.

Price of food now, Home processing is profitable anyway you look at it.
 

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I once got nearly banned for explaining to newbies that if they were just starting out, having to buy all their jars and canning supplies, didn't grow/raise/hunt their own food to put in the jars and would have to buy it, plus the cost of the energy to preserve it, at that time my calculations indicated that if they were cash strapped, they would have been better off buying commercially canned food at sale or bulk prices.

You would have thought I cast aspersions on some people's grandmas, they way they reacted. I was thoroughly pummeled, electronically of course. Kill the messenger was the order of the day!

Yes, of course I realized that home preserved foods are usually more flavorful and have more vitamins retained. Yes, I realized that we can home preserve wonderful, heirloom varieties that are never available commercially. Yes, I realized home canning smacks of independence, self sufficiency and the American way (cue patriotic music). For Pete's sake, I spend half my summer slaving over a hot canner. But I do it for the quality of what's in the jars, I already have my equipment, and I have my own fruit, vegetables and meat to can. So all I have to buy are the sugar/salt, lids, water, and power. For some young family, really struggling to make ends meet, with nothing already in place other than hungry mouths, it is really hard to be able to beat the cost savings of judiciously purchased commercially preserved food. (Or at least it was back then, about 5 or 6 years ago.)

But the bottom line is that I was concerned about some new folks who seemed to be very short of money and were stressing about getting all the stuff everyone of the old hands was telling them they needed, when I doubted whether they could even afford the food to can after they bought all the rest. People just didn't want to believe that sometimes, the preferred method is not necessarily the most cost effective.

By the way, is it just my Doubting Thomas side showing, or is it not surprising that a website that promoted dehydrating found that dehydrating and other forms of home food prep were most economical? Another by the way, I never went back to that subforum ever again. The moderator was one of the gang who jumped on me because they didn't want to hear my findings. I learned that home canning is a sacred cow in certain circles, but I made the mistake of thinking that the truth would win out. Silly me.
 

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Ovsfarm, yikes! Kill the messenger, indeed. I agree that if you are just looking to get started in prepping, buying extra of what you already buy (unless that's frozen fast food, maybe) is a good way to increase your food security. Heck, I still buy canned spaghetti sauce - most years I can't get enough tomatoes ripe off my patch to can a year's supply of sauce, much less the 2 years I like to have in backup. Lots of other commercially canned and frozen items in my food stores. I also dehydrate and can some of my own, and hope eventually to get that to most of my own.

However, I don't think getting the equipment to do that canning and dehydrating necessarily has to be all that expensive. Most of my canners were free or nearly so, from garage sales, my 2 Excalibur dehydrators were $6 for the 5 tray and $12 for the 9 tray, also from garage sales. I think the most I paid for anything canning related was the All American canner I got for $35, like new, at yet another garage sale. Most of my jars were GW, garage sale or gifted to me. I always check for canning lids, too. A couple years ago, I found 12 dozen brand new wide mouth lids and rings new in the box for .50 a dozen. Fruit and veg can often be found free if you're willing to pick it or pick it up. An on-line ad for the things you need can often net you jars, produce and lots more, free or cheap.

So, preserving can be done on the cheap, if you have the time and patience to search for the bargains. However, while you're waiting for them, it's a good idea to hit the grocery store (and maybe the feed store for bulk grains) and get that pantry stocked up!
 
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