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Canning Jars, Lids In Short Supply Across Utah

HIGHLAND, Utah – Did you grow a garden during the pandemic? If so, you might be out of luck when it comes to finding the glass jars and lids needed to preserve your fall harvest.

“It’s pretty bare right now,” said Stephen Lilly, co-manager of the Ace Hardware in Highland, talking about the empty shelves that are normally stocked with jars, rings and lids.

The run on canning supplies is reminiscent of scenes at the beginning of the pandemic when toilet paper, cleaning products and other household items were in short supply.

“We were doing our best when we were getting stuff to keep it in stock but it was bought up so fast,” Lilly said.

Even though his store has been sold out for weeks, Lilly said he still gets dozens of calls a day from people looking for lids and jars. The increased demand started over the summer with the single-use lids, often referred to as flats, going first.

“People would buy the jars just so they could get the lids,” Lilly explained. “Our owner made some smart decisions and brought in different cans that he could find throughout our warehouse and he brought those in and they got bought up very quickly.”

Harmons also confirmed the shortage of canning supplies, saying the company’s grocery stores don’t have any lids available for customers.

“We are trying to secure inventory but there isn’t any inventory available from suppliers,” said Todd Jensen, Harmons’ senior vice president of sales.

Lehi resident Trudy Jacklin said she sensed in the spring that canning supplies would be hard to find this year and made sure to stock up.

“Salsa, peaches and pears,” she said about her typical canning routine. “We do a lot of freezer jam.”

She hasn’t had any luck finding jars and lids for her daughters.

“I just started calling places and everybody’s out,” Jacklin said.

Jacklin’s daughter, Megan Carson, has been searching for weeks.

“Now that it’s time to can, I just don’t have any of the jars that I thought I had,” Carson said. “I can’t find them anywhere.”

Lilly said his Ace Hardware location isn’t expecting any new shipments of canning supplies until October, which will be too late in the season for many home canners.

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