VICTOR, N.Y. – CountryMax Stores, a Western New York family-owned business with 18 retail locations, recently hosted a live canning class at its Webster store featuring Paul Guglielmo. More than 40 people attended, and the class was also videotaped so even more canning enthusiasts can enjoy it.
To see the class, visit the CountryMax YouTube channel.
Guglielmo, who owns Craft Cannery in Bergen, NY, is also the maker of Guglielmo’s Sauce, sold at all CountryMax Stores. Before getting into the sauce business, Guglielmo was a local radio personality in Rochester. That combination of experiences makes him a natural presenter.
Even so, the canning class, which lasted about an hour, was a first for Guglielmo and for CountryMax.
“I’ve taught hundreds of regular cooking classes,” he says, “but canning is something I’m actually more of an expert in.”
The fit is a natural one. CountryMax carries a complete lineup of home canning supplies, including Ball jars, lids, ladles, tongs, wide-mouth funnels, even PH meters. Store managers have noticed a surge in home canning purchases in recent years.
“It’s been fun to watch the growth of canning and home harvesting over the past few years,” says Brad Payne, Director of Sales. “Having so many people at home the past year really accelerated what we were already seeing—there really is a great feeling of pride when you grow, process, and then eat food right out of your own backyard.”
What you can learn
Attendees of the canning class were treated to information and opinions about the hot water bath method of home canning. Viewers of the video will learn:
- How to prepare fresh-picked vegetables for canning
- What supplies you’ll need for hot water bath canning
- The importance of sterilization in the process
- How PH (acidity) factors into home canning
- What’s considered a best practice vs. personal preferences
- How to know if your jars are sealed tight when you finish!
Also on the CountryMax website you’ll find an interactive guide to canning. It’s called “Backyard Harvesting: Your Guide to Home Canning Success” and printed copies are still available at some stores.
Return to live events
The recent canning class represents a return to live in-store events at CountryMax. Many of the of stores feature event rooms that are ideal for birthday parties, education classes, dog training, school field trips, even pet weddings.
With a growing assortment of food products, canning and cooking classes are a logical next event type for the retailer.
For more information about events at CountryMax, contact Event Specialists Lexi Koepke at 585-924-4850, or email email@example.com.