All American Canners

Recently I was in the market for a pressure canner to preserve my fruits and vegetables. Whilst researching the options available in Australia it seemed the only option for pressure canning was the Presto Pressure Canner (of which the 23 Quart model looked like the size best suited to my needs), and at $200 AUD delivered it was certainly affordable. What didn’t suit me about the Presto unit though was the gaskets.  For long term usage you’ll need to replace the gasket periodically.

There is also the All American Canner which is a gasketless design and it certainly looks more at home in an industrial facility than the kitchen. The problem I found with the All American Canners was trying to find one available in Australia or one that can be shipped to Australia. I wanted to get a 25 quart model (Model 925) however I couldn’t find anywhere that would ship to Australia. After almost giving up in frustration I found that the next size down (Model 921, 21.5 quart capacity) is able to be shipped to Australia.

To my surprise I found that Amazon would ship the 21.5 quart model to Australia, though still not the 25 quart model. Though with one caveat with ordering the 21.5 quart model from Amazon is that they won’t ship it to PO Box addresses so you must provide a street address for delivery.

The 21.5 quart model is $178.49 USD plus shipping of $65.75 USD (to NSW, Australia) which comes to $244.24 USD delivered. For my order it only took 10 days to deliver from the USA to NSW, Australia.  For those who are unfamiliar with shipping from the USA to Australia, considering the size of the box (40cm L x 36cm W x 42cm H) and with a weight of just under 25kg, this shipping price is impressive to say the least.

Contained in the box is:

  • 1x 21.5 Quart All American Canner
  • 2x Racks to keep the jars off of the bottom of the canner and a second level if possible
  • 1x Weighted pressure release rocker – with settings for 5lb, 10lb, and 15lb of pressure.
  • Manual with Recipes

The All American Canners have both the pressure guage AND the automatic weighter pressure release rocker, so you can see the pressure as well as let it regulate it automatically for you – though you need to compensate for your altitude.

You can find the All American 921 21-1/2-Quart Pressure Cooker/Canner over at Amazon here.

Honest to Goodness – Artarmon NSW

An excellent Sydney resource for Grains, Seeds and Pulses is Honest to Goodness located in Artarmon NSW. They have a great range, great prices, and if you are located nearby you can save on the delivery fee by picking up direct from their warehouse.

An example of some of their products are listed below:

Item Size Price
Wheat 12.5kg $22.20
Pinto Beans 25kg $99.00
Red Kidney Beans 25kg $116.40
Navy Beans 5kg $23.10
Canellini Beans 25kg $99.00
Borlotti Beans 25kg $124.50

This is only a fraction of their product range, so be sure to check them out for yourselves.

Costco weekend roundup – 17 Sep 2011

For preppers in Sydney and Melbourne, Costco certainly looks like a good option for volume and price.  But one important caveat is don’t assume that because it’s at Costco that it’s automatically cheaper, you should still compare and keep an eye out for bargains whereever they are.  For those who see the membership fee as a barrier, do some searching and see whether you’ll make that fee back (plus some) in bargains over the year or not… there are plenty of people blogging about prices, and I’m sure I’ll just be one of many.

I’ll try and do a roundup of any good prices I see whenever I visit.  It certainly won’t be the price of everything, nor will it be every week.

Here’s this weekends items of note:

Item Costco Price Notes
Thai White Rice 10kg $9.49  
Mariani Beef Jerky 255g $8.99  
Carman’s Natural Muesli $9.79  
Diced Tomato’s 400gx12 $6.69  
Cinnamon 303g $3.59  
Onion Flakes 332g $3.99  
Palmolive Naturals Soap 20 pack
(Aloe and Olive)
$8.99 ($0.45 ea) Woolworths price for 4 pack is $2.79 ($0.70 ea)
Maglight LED Torch Combo 1x 3D torch and 1x AA torch $37.98  
Denby 16 piece dinnerset $149.97 Ok, not so preppping related, but a good price locally.
Sunbeam Foodsaver VAC660 $196.99 Boxes of 2x 28cm Rolls are $29.99

One category of items I didn’t see there were any dry beans.  They had tinned beans, but not the dry ones.

If anyone has some special requests of a price check then I’ll see what I can do – but don’t expect me to price check a list of 100 items.

Costco expansion in Australia

Opening dates have been announced for Costco in Sydney and now even in Canberra – both scheduled to open in July 2011.

After watching the success of the Melbourne store opening, Sydney residents have been patiently waiting for the Auburn facility to be constructed.  Obviously Melbourne was a bigger success that expected, for Costco to also announce a Canberra store due to open at the same time as Sydney.

Whilst we’ve had smaller big box groceries targetted at businesses (e.g. Cambell’s Cash and Carry), Costco would be the first to target the consumer and on a scale not seen before in Australia.  It would seem that Australia is finally catching up to the big-box grocery store format.

Food Grade Storage buckets

If you are looking to store bulk grains as part of your preparations, you’ve probably spent some time trying to locate suitable plastic food grade storage containers.

Whilst many online sites mention the 5 gallon buckets (or pails) for food storage containers, the closest size found in Australia would be the 20 litre bucket.

One such supplier of these buckets is The NCI Packaging Shop, this site sells a moderate range of plastic storage buckets up to 20 litre, along with a host of other plastic and even metal containers.  At the time of this post the 20 litre bucket are $5.87 AUD (lid costs $1.40 AUD).  Smaller versions of the same are the 15 litre bucket $5.65 AUD (lid costs $1.32 AUD), or the 10 litre bucket $4.15 (lid costs $1.22 AUD).

One factor to keep an eye on when ordering from this site though is the freight costs.  To Sydney it costs $12.00 AUD for orders under $50 AUD, where-as it jumps to $37.00 AUD for orders up to $250 AUD.  So to keep overheads down you might wish to stick to ordering below $50 per order until you intend to spend over $150 – at least for those of you from states other than NT, QLD or VIC.  The point is that you might have to fiddle around with the number of orders to keep the freight costs down.

I’m not sure how airtight these containers are, so to be safe you might consider pre-packaging your grains into mylar bags with oxygen absorbers and then storing these bags in the plastic buckets.  This way the buckets keep out the bugs and provide a durable storage container whilst the mylar bags keep out the air and moisture.