A guide to making Jam

We all at some point in our lives have tried jam whether that be strawberry jam, gooseberry, rhubarb or raspberry, the variations are limitless but have you ever thought about making some of your own? (That could even make you some money!) Well here at Pattesons we thought it would be good to produce a guide to jam making with everything you need to know from industry secrets to complying with the food standards agency. So let get started.

First step.

You need decide why you are making jam, are you doing it for the fun and enjoyment of preserving or are you taking the business approach? If you are in it for the fun a good starting point would be making your favourite jam for friends and family! If not, you need to research the market, find out what is currently selling well at local markets and food outlets. After this you may want to visit a few local markets to scout out your competition, to see what they sell and the prices it’s selling at. Once some basic market research is carried out, you will have a sense of what jam to start producing.

The next step is choosing the jar.

You need to think like your customers, often businesses struggle as they become blinded by personal opinion. You need to consider whether it’s best for a plain looking jar with simple packaging and labelling or if you’re targeting a more fancier cliental, that require fancy packaging and decorative jars with unusual shapes. This will impact your profit margins but ultimately will be down to the quality of your product and whether people keep coming back for it. (Look back at your market research and see what was working for others)

Check the law on selling jam.

If you are making jam for a few friends and family you won’t need to worry about this but if you are serious about your business you will need to contact your local authority and register your kitchen. Be sure to check all legislation as it covers many different aspects form packaging to labelling.

Next check your figures!

It’s alright saying we have the best jam around but if you haven’t crunch the numbers you might not be making much profit at all! Consider the cost of ingredients, packaging, market stalls, transportation, training, equipment, certificates and finally the time you spend preserving.

This will be the least enjoyable part but is a must if you are to turn your passion into a business adventure. After calculating your cost you can start to think about the price you are going to charge.

The final step.

Ask a few friends and family to sample your product and see what their feedback is. If it’s positive why not test it out at a local market and see what happens you might be surprised.

Pattesons recommendation.

We recommend our 8oz hexagonal jar for new comers. You can find it on our website at


Thanks for reading.