In these tough economic times, more and more people are looking for ways to save money while cutting back on everyday expenses. One sure-fire way to do just that, while at the same time choosing a more healthy, chemical-free means of feeding yourself and your family is through home canning. Canning used to be the method most people used to keep and store their food. I believe it became less popular as the world became more fast paced. Family farms turned into suburbs, suburbs turned into cities, etc... As this all evolved, so too did fast foods, frozen and prepackaged meals. Home canning fresh fruits and vegetables allows families to eat chemical-free meals, at a fraction of the costs. Virtually any foods which can be purchased can also be canned at home. From Soups, sauces, meats, salsa, fruits, vegetables to jams and jellies. Contrary to popular belief, canning isn't complicated, nor does it involve a lot of hard work, just some time which in the end pays for itself. All one really needs to start are a few canning essentials such as a pressure cooker, and or a water bath canner. The water bath canner being the less expensive of the two. Although both are very affordable considering the money you will be saving in the long run. Canning jars, lids and rings are a must. The rings themselves are reusable, but the lids are a one time use only, to make sure there is no spoilage. It's also nice to have a set of jar tongs, for lifting the jars, and a magnetic lid wand for lifting the hot sterilized lids. I would also suggest a canning book which will help you with specific directions, recipes, etc... With all these essentials at hand you are well on your way to improving your food supply, while at the same time saving money and cutting back on expenses. For those of you out there who are not able to grow your own fresh fruits, and vegetables, try visiting a local farmers co-op, or a local green house. In the long run you will still come out saving money.