I’ve stocked away a few jars of tomatoes and tomato juice and pickles, but darn it if jars and lids aren’t hard to find these days.

Lately, scarcity of resources has been hampering my can-do attitude.

Canning supplies, especially jars and lids, have been out of stock at most of the grocery, hardware and farm stores I’ve checked this season.

Similar to the toilet paper drought at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, a renewed interest in growing and preserving food led to skyrocketing demand for and a subsequent shortage of canning-related items.

Longtime canners are trying to squirrel more food away, and tons of people are getting into home preserving for the first time.

It’s positive growth for a pastime I very much enjoy, but until suppliers are able to catch up, it’s been annoying to try to find the things I need in time.

Most stores have been out of jars and lids when I try to find them, and when I ordered lids online, what I received were suspect generic lids, not the Ball-branded lids I thought I’d purchased.

Still, I had enough to put up seven quarts and a few pints of tomatoes, four quarts of tomato juice and a few jars of pickles.

I’ve also explored freezing produce. I’ve got a few ears of corn in the chest freezer, and I plan to try a few bags of green beans and some peppers in there soon.

To me, freezing seems like a sub-optimal preserving method, because a power outage could ruin my stockpile.

I’ve also read that dehydrating might be an option, but I don’t have much experience with it, and I don’t have any equipment for it, which may be just as hard to find as canning supplies.

If you’ve found sources for canning supplies, or have tried alternate methods of preserving, let me know at [email protected].

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