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3lb Kilner jar of green beans in brine

20th Century

3lb Kilner jar of green beans preserved in brine since 1947.  Due to the rationing of food at this time, people would grow their own vegetables and preserve any produce they did not immediately use.  Rationing did not end until 1954.


When the war began, Britain was importing about 60% of her food. Soon ships bringing food to this country were being sunk, some of the countries that grew the food were taken over by the enemy, and sometimes bombs hit the warehouses where the food was stored. To ensure that everyone got a fair share, the government introduced a system of rationing.


Bacon, butter and sugar rationing was the first to be introduced on 8 January 1940. Meat rationing followed in March and in July, tea, cooking fats, jam and cheese followed. Initially people were permitted one egg per fortnight, and three pints of milk a week, but later dried milk and dried eggs became more common. A points system gave shoppers a choice of other foods such as breakfast cereals, biscuits, canned fruit and fish. From July 1942 sweets were rationed to 2 ounces (50g) a week. Petrol and clothes were also rationed.

glass, metal
height 180mm, diameter 97mm, diameter 80mm
Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
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Dumfries & Galloway Council