Canning Food: "Miracle of the Can" circa (1949) American Can Company

Canning Food: "Miracle of the Can" circa (1949) American Can Company



that mankind may have life and have it more abundantly this is the everlasting promise of nature the good things of the earth have been placed within our reach but man has never been relieved of the responsibility of earning them he has had to gain wisdom and understanding to adapt this incredible goodness to his needs and so through the years man has watched and studied the great natural forces that were meant to serve him Oh electricity was once a frightening thing but not anymore we have learned how to channel its power into telephone radio refrigerator electric lights it is one of the prime movers of the age in which we live the wind was a wild untamed thing comrade of space in the stars until man learned how to make it work for him water anywhere is potential power but uncontrolled it is also unpredictable so man built dams and behold this pent-up power becomes a tremendous agency for good here is desolation good land once until man let the topsoil wash away but topsoil is the very source of life and man is learning to conserve it so that nature may give more abundantly of all the growing things of field and he'll in his endless struggle to a verte starvation man has been striving for a better understanding of nature's laws the gains he has made our witnessed in our bounteous props even soap and white as the Bible warns there's a time for sowing and a time for reaping but the time for reaping is so very short that perhaps is why man has always made so much of harvest made it a time of festival or prayer for he knows his life depends on swiftly gathering in the body nature gives him loss in America we have always offered thanks for the blessings of the earth which reminds us how the harvest tided our forefathers through lean and hungry winters by the same token spring has ever been a time of rejoicing of joy in the promise of still another harvest when field and tree again bring forth a profusion of delicious gifts that beckon us to come and gather in but nature has a way of holding out her bounty then snatching it away all too quickly it is gone true it serves to reinstall but as for man's immediate needs a total loss of course all growing things are contained within a protective covering but it occurred to man that if he could provide a permanent protective covering for the bounty of nature he could then readily extend the harvest season until every day in the year became a day of Plenty a simple idea but one of great promise today it's perfection is a man-made miracle we refer to it and rightly so as the miracle of the can but we've been talking about man as if women didn't exist which is most unfair let's go back to a hot summer's day around the year 1900 when in households across the land this was happening you know Lucy if we can get all these Tomatoes put up today we can start on the corn devour all that'll be good heavens of fudging the last thing we need right now is more Tomatoes we got twice what we can put up now I mean it Jim take them back outside and don't bring any more now don't take off on me Martha it's not my fault we had so many this year fact is I figured you'd be glad we got such a good crop of course I'm glad but I haven't got time to put up any more all right all right what'll I do with these feed them to the pigs feed him to the pigs what a waste of good tomatoes yes waste was the word and no way to beat it but along about that time things were happening that would change all that you know John I hear they're putting up soups and vegetables better and we can now open air fairport who is they the canneries and right with the sugar and all the other seasoning and the cooking and whatnot it cost less to well if that's true why do you slave over a hot stove when you can get them right down at the store but that matter why do I waste my time with these trees cost my back over the plow hey Kelly next he's now put in smaller crops no bigger crop bigger how in the world do you figure that well it's our chance to save some money where we can sell off route to the canneries and plant more and more things to sell them right through the season and then if the crops come in good we can put by enough money to send the boy to college so he can be a better farmer than me and grow more crops sure to sell to the calories you know Mary that's quite an idea you've got there that it was and it caught on farmers began to plant more and more acres improve their yield lifted their farm incomes to higher levels adding purchasing power that bled in the hearts of entire families and a new agricultural era was in the making all through the growing demand for canned foods but in those days progress was limited by the old-fashioned hole and cap can many things for instance had to be cut up and forced through the hole in the top of the can filling canned was therefore a slow process after filling a cat had to be soldered over the hole by hand and that required a lot of work to say nothing of an equally important element time result it just couldn't turn out canned foods fast enough to keep up with a growing demand what else mr. Moran well I need some peas three cans of team as you can d that's the last of the peas mrs. Moran can't seem to stock up enough for you folks so why don't you order more man I get ordered till the cows come home but if the cannery don't have them they can't send them and if they don't send them I can't sell them comes to three dollars and 18 cents 318 my better price is coming down stop ep's with the peters by casa calorie send you enough well ma'am it is a known of the cannery I was over there the other day tester number more my customers asking for answers I and given to you Susie why not says I don't ask me says he asked the can make er so I took the buggy and drove over to the can maker and by the nasty uh I know your folks you can't be told you've got to be shown so let's take a look around is where we cut the body blanks man here is forming the can button here he's soldering the side-scene pretty slow work over here they're soldering on the tops and the bottoms the crank our friend here is hollering for more canned goods how many cans do you think we've been out to dayton we configured on maybe 600 there you are I've got three men soldering here they can turn out only six hundred cans a day we got calls for a lot more than that why don't you hire more men you find them in I'll hire solder errs don't grow on trees but by golly fruit does the cops are coming in right now Henry's are crying for cans and you think you got problems now mind you ma'am our local can makers as good as any of them but it's just that can make it is a slow process hey Jimmy come over here I want to show you something son here's a lesson you learn in school someday cropping can geography you might say here's us here's the can making plant here's the cannery here's the farmland farmers are planting more land all the time but mean more and more cups because the cannery is here to take care of now just imagine this same thing taking place all or all there lots of Canada's and can make isn't the growing areas but when harvest time rolls around the crops come in it's the same story everywhere they're all swamped with orders that they just can't feel yes it was apparent that the task of serving a whole nation was too big for the can production capacity available in those days the need was clear for a pooling of resources in the interest of better experimentation research engineering skill and greater can production so many can makers did combine their facilities and pool their knowledge form the american can company plus in 1901 was laid the foundation for advancements in can making destined to serve mankind in war as well as peace but despite much early progress in can making it continued to be a slow process part of the trouble was the can itself it didn't lend itself to mass production then came a development that was to have far-reaching effect say you're right Harry this is different certainly is a new basic idea and can making let me see that though hold on the top nope canners get them with this end entirely open so they can pack whole tomatoes or peaches or other fruits and vegetables in this can don't have to cut things up consumers will love that how is it sealed sada no that's another advantage Tim no solder on the ends at all no sudden well how well we've got a machine that crimps the ends armed with a rubber composition gasket to keep in tight it's slow but with your help I think we can figure out a way to speed it up you know it seems to me that Cantor should be able to fill and close these faster than the old Holden cap can and it will cut their costs down what's it called Harry the sanitary can sanitary can mm-hmm goodnight by golly if we just work out a way to turn these out in quantity and fat that's just what's needed fellas let's get to work and get to work they did making improvements both in the can and the machinery for its mass production and efficient use in canneries and also in plants packing a host of non-food products but while their efforts and those of many others were limited by the engineering development of their day the continued necessity for much handwork they were destined to revolutionize not only an industry but the distribution techniques the shopping habits the very standard of diet hundreds of millions of people for as combined knowledge and increased experience of these pioneer can makers began to catch hold the tempo in each plant quicken the volume roads ten thousand cans a day twenty-five thousand fifty-thousand yes man finally had created the real answer for preserving the fruits of land and sea indefinitely those farmers were encouraged to plant more land and sell their increased props to the canners and the swing to more profitable farming lifted property values everywhere the same expansion was going on in the fishing industry and the meatpacking industry better breeds bigger herds due to the greater capacity of packers to can meet products all this because the can making industry had faced and met nature's challenge here is my limitless bounty for the taking protek did well so today man controls the use of nature's gifts far beyond the time of harvest at last man has the means for using the natural resources of this great land to the utmost intended by its creator thanks to the formation and growth of a great enterprise moreover far more people earning far more have a part in this industry today then could possibly have found employment under the antique methods of the past today the can making industry turns out billions metal cans a year why one modern can line alone produces over 200,000 cans in a single day remember Frank and his six hundred cans a day well it would take Frank with his old fashioned machines and more than 60,000 can makers working with him at least 25 years to produce the billions of cans turned out by the industry every year but as in countless other industries here in our country each man on a can making line today produces far more because of the modern equipment he has to work with naturally this greater production means higher wages higher standards of living and even lower food costs for us all now let's see how this manufacturing miracle is brought to pass it begins here with steel steel made to exacting specifications determined by the can makers metallurgists men who have pioneered with steel producers to achieve this superior product for can making needs these particular sheets of Steel are already coated with a very thin layer of 10 and thus called tin plate in making cans it is necessary to ensure the absolute protection of their contents when the cans are later filled and sealed so the coating being added here is an additional protective enamel lining used for certain products in this baking oven it is dried and hardened when the plates with a coating baked to a golden color emerge from the oven they are ready to be made into cans for foods like corn lima beans and countless other products next the plate is cut into the right shapes and sizes to form can bodies on this machine called a sliver these are body blanks meanwhile other plate cut the proper size is fed into machines which stamp out the ends and curl their outer edges into the curl of the ends is injected a rubber gasket material graphically Illustrated it looks like this later on when the ends are seemed on the can body this material will provide an air tight bond between the body and the end pieces now to make the can body this body maker actually operates too fast for us to see how the can body is formed so after the body blanks which you saw being cut earlier are fed into the body maker we will follow its intricate steps in slow motion and with graphic illustrations first the body blanks move to a notching station here small notches are cut from the corners to eliminate a double thickness of metal when the ends are seemed on the body blank is then formed and hooked into the familiar shape of the can around the body maker next they are bumped to form and tighten the side seam the formed body then pass over flexing wheels to a hot solder bath where a solder is applied to the outside of the side seam the side seam is then wiped off and cooled by a blast of air then the body is speed along to where they are flange that each n so the tops and bottoms will fit on here you will see why the body blanks were notched notches eliminate a double thickness of metal where the side seam overlaps the flange part only two layers come together at this point thus permitting a perfect seal when the end pieces are seemed on here in the can making plant only one of the end pieces is double seemed in place and the other end left open so the cans may be easily filled at the canneries this operation is extremely important it calls for the utmost precision one end is placed on the can body it curls over the flange on the body and precisely the right amount remember that rubber gasket material in the curl of the end pieces well this material provides a bond between the layers of metal to ensure a permanent airtight seal as they are pressed together to give us the finish CC later when the cans have been filled in a cannery the other end will be double seemed on in the same way with exactly the same procedure but returning to the can making line our cans with only one end seemed on leave the double seamer ready for final testing fresh air is a wonderful thing but not in a can by means of air pressure this machined it takes a can that might leak air and tosses it out as a suspect to be checked separately against the can like the red one we know to be a leaker and that's it the seemingly simple can requires such precision in its making that any variation in excess of a few thousandths of an inch are sufficient to cause automatic rejection this ability to achieve high speed production with such precision has placed the can manufacturing industry in the front rank of the mass production leaders of the world but how do all these billions of cans get the right place at the right time food cans for instance well that takes a lot of planning a lot of experience and good teamwork between the can manufacturer the canner and the farm actually there's hardly a minute of the day or night that you won't see trucks loaded with containers or freight cars similarly loaded on their way to the canneries scattered across the land such journeys are initiated at the canneries but there's more to it than just loading a truck or freight car because with all man's controls there's still one thing about nature he can't change the uncertainty of the weather so the weather holds good crops should be ready about the 30th give or take a day on either side hmm so you want your cans around these can you make it the 21st 21st it is how many we better have two car loads a day till a pack is complete you'll get them I know I can depend on you if there's any change in the weather you'll be hearing from us we've got to be ready when the crop is and that readiness depends upon the weather but weather and its effect on a crop like peas for example is a mighty unpredictable thing you can't depend on guesswork that's why the american can company developed this machine the ten durometer it shows when a pea crop has reached the proper stage of maturity for best quality such information together with a Council of agronomist sent out by the can makers help scanners and farmers select the right time for harvesting well what do you think I'd say you can start taking them in next Monday any special time of the day or do you leave that up to me monday is okay with me but sometimes unexpected things happen well it's plenty hot out here the temperature shut right up we took another ten durometer reading this morning and it shows our peas are going to be ready much sooner than we figured we've got to have cans right away okay and of course we'll get chance to you what God worry we'll get them there on time too and so it goes for the entire can making industry operates on this principle enough cans at the right place at the right time to meet the canners needs plus every year billions of cans go out into the world packed with the yield of land and sea to say nothing of myriads of other products for man's use and every can must speak for itself wherever it's open whenever it open whatever it contains the contents must be in perfect condition word for that is dependability dependability built by the eternal vigilance modern industry and science into every single can or whatever the contents whatever their ultimate purpose the goal is satisfaction there is nothing more important than serving the health and well-being of multitudes of people providing protective containers for the food of a nation is such a service about which here's something to remember no no Joan don't do that you're throwing away the best part well he has only water water nothing that's the liquid they were dropped in it's full of vitamins and mineral rights drawing differently would be like like doing a chicken and throwing away the bra right for not only do canned foods contain as much nutrition as fresh cooked foods but nature's own nutrients are sealed in when these foods are at their very best and none of the precious values can escape now let's heat the liquid and we'll add the peas just a few minutes before we're ready to serve the liquid will keep them hot and you know they are already cooked perfectly we can depend on that dependability and nutrition these essential characteristics of canned foods are assured by constant laboratory studies of canning techniques the first laboratory in the industry devoted to such studies was established by the american can company in nineteen hundred and six since then scientific study and research have grown with the industry today it reaches into every phase canning and can making tinplate for instance in itself comes from far-off lands thus every world crisis threatens its supply the can making industry is therefore working on coatings and bonding materials that will replace 10 in can making will be better than 10 and best of all always available here on our own continent thus industry constantly looks to the combined skills of science and manufacturing to solve many problems which directly affect our daily lives for instance behind this simple familiar twist of the wrist lies a story of teamwork typical of the achievements in the can making industry that bring the homemaker convenience and satisfaction here's how it came about head this is mr. Ward the coffee roaster I told you about toward me Ted Allen of our research staff pleased to meet you how do you do tell I'd what you're up against mr. Ward well it's short and sweet we packed coffee here's the container we are using it's good but it's not airtight now you know coffee when it's freshly ground and exposed to air naturally lose this freshness and there goes our flavor has been on the show for a while you can guess what we've got mm-hmm stale coffee probably if it stays there long enough right and folks don't like it well there's only one real answer to that since it's the air the ruins your coffee you've got to take the air how they can or thank you coffee can is what you need that sounds good but I've never seen a vacuum coffee can which is easy to pack an easy for the housewife to open well those are our problems and they're toughened let's work on them it's sure a closer you've got to develop a can strong enough to hold a vacuum and yet will be easy to open let me think it over a while I'll try to come up with something but I warn you it may need designing machinery to produce it you let me worry about that call me into getting an idea oh hell oh hell it's a John got a pencil on paper hmm wake up this is what you've been waiting for grab a pencil all right all right okay draw your self a sanitary can only a little shorter and about five inches in diameter got it yeah yeah go on now draw a bead on it about 1 inch from the top all right now cut away part of the can to show the inside okay now inside the can draw a color from the bottom of the be up to the underside of the cover and add a curl at the top of the collar I got it all right now push the bottom of the color into the bead to hold it in place and just above the bead draw a double score on the outside of the can go ahead now at the end of the score over the side seam add a tongue about a half an inch long right Wow can you make that sure we can make it but what is it what is it well put a tee on it to wind off the scored strip and that's our new easy opening vacuum coffee can John I think you've got something but how about vacuum packing well John had the answer for that too after the cans are filled with coffee and loosely covered they pass into a chamber for a vacuum closing machine draws out the air almost at the same time the covers are tightly double seemed on so that no air can possibly get back in so from then on the vacuum coffee can not only solved the roasters problem of protecting his products freshness even though months or years my past before the cans world but it also met the consumers demand for easy opening more than that it led to other developments that make the housewives job easier for it was an ideal container for a variety of products especially shortening so for freshness and convenience instead of this this and for sanitary protection neatness cleanliness instead of this this or perhaps the whole story can be summed up in the vast difference between this and with all it signifies in our modern way of life this so a basic idea adapted to human needs is like a pebble dropped in a pool the need is the tablet the pool our democratic way of life and the answer the ring spreading ever outward touching the lives of millions for everlasting good that is why this key is not just a little household gadget symbol of challenges met and victories one for the good of all many needs many challenges and many answers whether containers of steel or paper or a combination of both they are products of a can makers imagination and skills here are some of them just a few all of them we know we recognize each one instantly familiar to us from almost daily use many of their colorful and informative labels as seen on store shelves were skillfully lithographed and permanently baked on in the can making plant all is part of the can making process [Applause] this too while not a can it had its beginning in the minds of can makers whose skill in shaping ceiling and mass producing metal containers was applied to the problem of fashioning from paper the ideal disposable container for the dairy industry yes these containers are familiar because they are part of the pattern of our living an essential indispensable part of our way of life even recreation just another type of can just as if these tennis balls were peas or beeps or beamed they will come out as perfect as they were when they were put in while man may survive without tennis there have been all too many occasions when a life has depended on the blood plasma in that very same kind of camp coming out as perfect as it was when it went in to the men and women who make the can there could be no greater satisfaction than it's used for a purpose such as this thus every new idea sets in motion a succession of ideas that expand in ever widening circles so the miracle of the can continues bringing to countless supporting industries added expansion and prosperity to millions of people more jobs greater security and a better way of life the can manufacturing industry ranks among the first 10 indispensable industries of the world hundreds of thousands of men and women in the united states canada hawaii alaska and elsewhere depend upon its continuing prosperity it's bright future is theirs this achievement this present day flowering of the seeds of enterprise first planted by the pioneer can makers of America and nurtured by their successors has truly brought about a miracle of benefits to our people a miracle which continues daily for all people for today everyday is harvested daily we have the assurance of nature's bounty both for today and tomorrow much we have today and our promise of the future is ever more and more and just as harvest time means more than the ending of one bonnabel season it contains within itself the seeds of another fruitful spring so this humblest little servant of your daily life contains not just a product but symbolizes a more abundant life for all freedom-loving people everywhere in the world this is the miracle of the camp you

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