HAMMS Event – Help A Minnesota Maker Succeed


A Minnesota market with a twist!

The Twist?

The HAMMS Event (map) is unique as it is a dog-friendly, crowd-funding marketplace. Attendees pay a small fee ($10 online or $15 at the door) and your collective support is awarded to one of the makers via a random game of chance. Up to $5000 in event ticket sales and donations will be awarded to one of the Minnesota makers to invest in their business.

The HAMMS Event, established in 2013, is an annual maker market centered around the support for Minnesota entrepreneurs behind local brands.

Dine via Red River Kitchen’s food truck (menu), imbibe local beer and spirits, and mix and mingle, all while supporting the Minnesota maker community.

“Risk more than others think is safe. Dream more than others think is practical.” – Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks.








When You Grow Up

What do you want to be when you grow up?

The other day, kids at the preschool adjacent to the jam kitchen dressed up in answer to that question. Cops. Doctors. An artist. Athletes. Chefs. Construction workers. Princesses. Lots of princesses.

Looking at them, I asked the question of myself. What do I want to be? Creative. When I grow up I want to be creative.

Then it hit me. I could be creative in any of the occupations those kids personified. As a cop, I could create relationships with people in the neighborhoods I served. No two relationships are the same. I would learn about all kinds of people and they would learn about me. What would be the special things that differentiated our relationships?

As a doctor or other medical professional, I could create care plans for people living with all kinds of illnesses. How would I help a diabetic kid? What about a middle-aged heart attack survivor? Guided by how people wanted to live their lives, I would help them create ways to live unencumbered by their diagnoses.

As an artist I could create beauty and meaning with any thing I saw or felt or smelled. All those future athletes have the potential to create healthy bodies, strong teams, happy memories for fans. Those chefs will unleash their creativity on foods and beverages in ways I can’t imagine. Oh those princesses. Imagine the gorgeous castles they will create, the serene lives they will help create for the people in their lands.

Best of all, I AM creative. I am a creative jam maker. Duluth Preserving Company is a path to creativity. Our focus is handcrafting jams. We use traditional methods to create jams with brand new fruit and spice combinations. We add spices that my grandmothers never had in their kitchens and fruits they could not access. Life is good during those hours spent cooking jam. Contentment derives from racks of shining jars full of freshly created goodness.

Three new flavors are in the works. When we’ve finished creating them, you can let us know what you create with them.

Now Hiring

Become our first REAL employee! Send an email to info@duluthpreservingcompany.com to request an application.

Job title:                  Kitchen assistant

Job status:               Part time

Job classification:   Non-exempt/hourly

Working hours:      10 to 15 hours/week, schedule to be determined

About Duluth Preserving Company (DPC)

Jam making is our craft; bold fruit and spice combinations characterize our brand. We choose the best fruits possible, purchasing regional, wild, and organic fruits at every opportunity. We have been making jam professionally since 2013. Our business includes over 20 wholesale customers, and we sell at six to ten major retail events each year. We build community around jams, donating them to fundraisers for organizations that house, feed, and educate our neighbors.

General Description

The kitchen assistant is responsible for assisting in the daily tasks involved in prepping, making, storing, and shipping jam.


  • Ability to work independently and jointly in a busy commercial kitchen environment
  • Ability to work safely and efficiently and keep work spaces clean to commercial kitchen standards
  • ServSafe certification or other required training courses

 Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Attend work on a timely and regular basis
  • Prepare raw ingredients and set up batches of jam
  • Assist in the canning process (wipe jar rims, cap jars)
  • Clean kitchen work areas, equipment, and utensils to commercial kitchen standards
  • Ability to stand for long periods of time and move jars, equipment, and ingredients between the kitchen and the storage area
  • Label jars and package them for storage or shipping
  • Ability to safely and proficiently use knives, graters, food processor, peeling machine and/or other equipment/utensils/tools used in jam prep and canning
  • Assist with unloading pallets and moving jars and ingredients to storage area
  • Ability to lift 30 pounds on a regular basis

Other duties may be assigned to this position periodically as required by DPC need.

Physical Demands

The position includes lifting heavy objects on a regular basis, walking and standing for long periods of time, and performing physical labor required to prepare, can, store, and ship jam.

 Work Environment

The setting for this position is a busy commercial kitchen. At times, the kitchen space is shared with other users; it may involve frequent interruptions. The general space may also be shared with other church users, including a preschool.

 Responsibilities of All Employees

  • Mission, Vision, and Values: Work cooperatively with all employees, kitchen/church space users, customers, and vendors to enhance our mission, vision and values. Support the DPC mission by exhibiting professionalism, integrity, and ethical behavior.
  • Communication and Teamwork: Model DPC communication system through positive communication practices and teamwork. Follow DPC values in communicating with all employees, customers, and vendors.
  • Policies and Procedures: Know and follow DPC policies and procedures. Report to your supervisor incongruences in practices and policies that serve to diminish the effectiveness of the procedures and are counterproductive to the mission.
  • Positive Work Environment: Maintain positive attitudes and morale and develop positive co-worker relationships.
  • Cost Controls: Use assets efficiently and effectively to accomplish DPC goals and mission.
  • Cultural Competency and Inclusiveness: Display sensitivity and responsiveness to cultural and other differences among employees, customers, and vendors. Maintain a discrimination- and harassment-free environment.
  • Self-Development: Improve and develop personal and professional potential. Assess personal strengths and areas for improvement. Maintain a regular and reliable level of attendance necessary to perform job responsibilities.

This job description is intended to represent the general nature and level of work performed by individuals assigned to this job. It is not meant to be an exhaustive or complete list of all responsibilities; it may be subject to revisions or exceptions at any time at the discretion of DPC.


Second Saturday Marketplace Swan Song

ngn logo



Also known as “Nice Girls of the North,” Second Saturday Marketplace has been our monthly hangout for two years. Though we’ve always wondered why they let us in–really? Nice girls?–we’ve had a great run.

If you’ve never visited this marketplace, be sure to do it. Eleven talented, funny, enterprising women artists/crafters make up the core group. Two guest artists join us every month, allowing us to showcase a variety of talent. You’ll find baby and small child clothes, candles, upcycled and repurposed home decor and clothing, pottery, and more.

Two things about this market are pretty darn spectacular. One, over its four and a half years of  being there every month of the year, enough people have come through the doors and purchased enough stuff to keep the marketplace going. Two, local artists and crafters have a place to sell their creations and YOU have a place to purchase goods made right here.

Well, let’s make it three things. A number of our artisans/crafters got their start here. Are you someone who makes fantastic fudge or mittens or soap? Are you a woman who paints or makes jewelry or carves wood or makes art of any kind? Do you give away your work? Do you sell it for less than it’s worth? Second Saturday Marketplace has helped women give credence to their talents. Participating in an organized event has helped them believe in their talents and in what they have made. Apply to be a guest artist at an upcoming sale.

Second Saturday Marketplace is supported by the community, in true Duluth fashion. Event listings on Perfect Duluth Day, in The Woman Today, and in Congdon Neighbors magazine announce each month’s sale. The sale is posted through our membership in Visit Duluth, and we’ve made friends with hospitality industry professionals who tell hotel guests about us. Thanks, everybody!

As terrific as Second Saturday Marketplace is, Duluth Preserving Company is bowing out after the March 12 sale. Sad, for us, but true. We’re spreading our wings and working to grow the wholesale portion of our business. Successful efforts will be visible soon, as our jams will be sold in two new locations on the North Shore and in two more locations here in Duluth. The Cheese Cave in Faribault is our first ever location south of the Twin Cities.

We will still participate in local events so we can meet you, the foundation of our success. For that we are eternally grateful. Look for us in May at the Duluth Junk Hunt. Check back here for other events. Watch our facebook page for updates.

Please come to Second Saturday Marketplace. You won’t regret it. And this month you might be tempted by some sweet jam specials.


Upcoming Event: Lowertown Pop

A Minnesota pop-up market; crowd-funding to benefit Face to Face and our Minnesota Makers. Pop in and support the Minnesota Maker movement. Featuring local artisans and craftspeople, brewers, bakers, distillers, street performers, artists, and musicians.

Questions? Send us an email.

Makers Pin     Tickets Pin     Donate Pin

Everything you need to know and need to submit to participate in Lowertown Pop.

Presale tickets are $10 each ($15 at the door).
A ticket is required for entry. Your receipt is your ticket.
We are not responsible for lost or stolen tickets. Ticket purchases are non-refundable.
Free admission for children ages 5 and under.
100% of ticket sales will be shared with our charity partner, Face to Face and one lucky Minnesota Maker.
(Please note that 1/2 of your ticket price is tax deductible.)

Can’t make the event? We’ll miss you. But if you’d like to donate to our charity
partner, Face to Face and winning maker, they would appreciate it.
(Please note that 1/2 of your donation is tax deductible.)

socialfacebook  socialinsta  socialtwitter  socialpint

Jam is more than a topping for toast

Jam is more than a topping for toast. That’s our motto at Duluth Preserving Company.  Not that we don’t eat our share of toast.


Extraordinary jams let you cook and indulge in style, without guilt.

Having chicken for dinner? Doesn’t that need an Apple Lemon Ginger jam glaze? Making salad for lunch? Blueberry Maple vinaigrette is the perfect dressing for any salad. We love it on wild rice salad with diced veggies. Gooseberry Spice perfectly completes grilled cheese and grilled ham and cheese sandwiches.  Jam added to a smoothie makes a healthy snack or breakfast. Add a spoonful to granola for a breakfast treat.

Our weak side is sweets. The possibilities are endless: jam cake, jam bars, jam cookies and muffins.


Lingonberry Orange Jam adds depth to an appetizer tray of soft cheeses and whole-grain crackers. These earthy flavors combine in a surprisingly delectable way.


Let your imagination follow the jams’ lead. Take a look at our “Cook” page. We’re adding recipes bit by bit. Pick up recipe cards when you see us at local events.

Send us pictures and recipes from your kitchen. We love to hear about your jam favorites.


Blueberry Maple Jam Month

We have declared January 2016 BLUEBERRY MAPLE JAM MONTH. It’s our # 1 selling jam two years running. An apt reason to celebrate it as our very first jam of the month.



None of our jams is just for toast. Pelican Coffee serves this savory sandwich, the Blueberry Maple Turkey Melt. Our favorite two-year-old eats yogurt and Blueberry Maple Jam every morning for breakfast. Another winter breakfast treat is Blueberry Maple Jam stirred into hot oatmeal.



Blueberries taken from our home freezer over the winter evoke summer days spent picking. We make pie or muffins or add the berries to a fruit salad or soup. We taste summer sunshine and warm breezes.

Blueberry Maple Jam takes us back, too. Our Sunday morning waffles, topped with jam, are winter’s version of pancakes filled with fresh berries. Blueberry Maple Vinaigrette dressing (recipe coming soon) tastes terrific on salads in any season.

Isn’t it time you enjoy Blueberry Maple Jam? No jam in your pantry? Visit one of our retailers soon!


Minnesota Monthly Food and Wine Experience

We’ll be exhibiting at the Minnesota Monthly Food and Wine Experience (http://www.foodwineshow.com/). It’s this weekend, March 7/8, 1-5 p.m., Target Field, Minneapolis. What an opportunity: over 5,000 people attend. For us, that’s a lot. We’re ready! We’re excited to share our jams and our story.

In a sentence:

We create great-tasting jams using the flavors of the Great Lakes region adding only as much sugar as each jam needs.

Come for a taste of Lingonberry Orange, Strawberry Rhubarb, Gooseberry Spice (all new), Raspberry Red Currant, Strawberry Cranberry, Apple Lemon Ginger, Blueberry Maple, Rhubarb Cinnamon.

Look forward to seeing you there.


Literally translated, terroir means terrain. In Europe, where the phrase first came into common use,terroir referred specifically to grapes and their wines. It is now defined as the growing conditions that contribute to unique characteristics of many foods, such as eggs from free-ranging hens and beef from pastured cattle. The term was introduced to Americans in the early 2000s by Arlin Wasserman, whose organization, Changing Tastes, helped food-based companies sell their products based on the idea of taste of place,terroir, rather than on price.

Duluth Preserving Company’s jams represent the range of fruits that grow in the Arrowhead Region of Minnesota. The company’s co-founders dreamed of using local fruits, not just featuring those tastes, in their jams. It is the tastes of Duluth and its surrounds that led us to canning in the first place.

DPC uses hundreds of pounds each of blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, currants, rhubarb, plums, and other fruits each year. These amounts challenge the local food system because there are few growers here who are equipped to sell to wholesale to customers like us.  Local growers sell their fruits to retail customers in smaller amounts than DPC needs for its ongoing jam making. That makes sense for them and for you. Yet it means that the prices of local fruits are higher for us than are the prices of fruits from growers elsewhere who specialize in selling to wholesale customers.

So, does price trump terroir? We answer that question by selecting local ingredients, such as Bar Bell Bee honey and Rogotzke maple syrup, which are available year round in amounts we need. Regional ingredients available year-round include Michigan blueberries and Wisconsin cranberries. When we must choose from further away, we buy the best we can, including fresh apples and wild lingonberries, gooseberries, and red currants from Washington and organic plums from the West Coast and Montana. We finish the jams with fresh lemons, ginger, and limes—hand ground, zested, and juiced.

Our jams are affordable and they taste good. Our customers have said, “The Blueberry Maple Jam tastes like fruit, not like sugar.” “Apple Lemon Ginger Jam = Love.” “The Rhubarb Cinnamon Jam is to die for.” “Love your PlumCardamom!!” “I kick myself for not buying many more jars.”

Try some. Let us know how well you like them.

“Do You Make Low-Sugar Jams?”

Glad you asked.

Jam is made by cooking mashed or chopped fruit with sugar until a spoonful of the mixture mounds on a plate. So by its very nature, jam is a sweet food. It likely originated in the Mid-East, where cane sugar was readily available, as a means of preserving fruit. Wealthy Europeans began making jam in the 1600s, when sugar became available to them.  In the American colonies, maple sugar, honey, and molasses took the place of sugar before most people could afford it.

In The Science of Jam (http://www.finedininglovers.com/stories/science-food-jam), Riccardo Meggiato says the fruit to sugar ratio in jam should be 2:1 (2 pounds of fruit to 1 pound of sugar) for sweet fruits and 3:2 for bitter fruits. Mr. Meggiato advises, “If uncertain, it’s better to round up with the sugar.” Various university and government publications suggest even more sugar, such as 47 parts by weight of fruit to 55 parts sugar, and 4 cups of fruit to 4 cups of sugar.

Duluth Preserving Company jams contain sugar; some also contain honey or maple syrup. In developing recipes, we fail to take Mr. Meggiato’s advice, choosing to reduce the amount of sugar to the minimum needed to obtain the soft set that characterizes jam.

How do DPC jams stack up? Our Strawberry Rhubarb, Strawberry Cranberry, and Plum Cardamom jams exceed that ratio, having more fruit to less sugar than the suggested ratio of 2:1. Apple Lemon Ginger and Blueberry Maple have the suggested ratio, and Rhubarb Cinnamon, Raspberry Red Currant, and Apricot Vanilla Bean fall between the suggested ratios of 2:1 for sweet fruits and 3:2 for bitter fruits.

While we’re on the topic of sugar, let’s look at the bigger picture. Nutritionist Kate Geagan, a consultant on the Fed Up Challenge, reports that sugar is the most popular ingredient added to foods in the U.S. (http://katiecouric.com/features/how-to-avoid-added-sugars-at-the-grocery-store/). For example, traditionally non-sweet foods such ascommercially made salad dressings may have six to eight grams of sugar per serving. That, Ms. Geagan says, is like putting more than ½ a donut on your salad.

Try this salad dressing instead: combine 1 tablespoon Apricot Vanilla Bean Jam, 1½ tablespoons white wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon cracked black pepper. Whisk in ¼ cup oil. Toss on a salad of garden-fresh greens, sunflower seeds, and goat cheese.

Enjoy your jam.