Taking fresh fruit and turning it into jelly takes rather a long time. Is it worth the time? Yes, I believe so since I generally enjoy the process and the end product. But this time around I was curious what the value of the time was, financially.
Comparative Cost of Store-Bought Jelly
1 cup of jelly = 10 oz.
$0.06 to $0.40 per oz at Walmart. It is usually 30 – 50% higher at the local supermarket than at Walmart for such things, given the Walmart price is a bulk 2 pack of Welch’s grape jelly. I think $0.10/oz would be a good general price expectation for the cheaper products. Since our product is all natural, local, organic, and made by an award winning jam producer (that’s me, at the state fair a few years back) we could probably put it in the $0.20-$0.40/oz range for comparison.
Now for the costs of production:
27 cups produced = 270 oz.
21 cups of sugar or 4.2 kg or 9.3 lbs. That is just under $10 at Walmart online pricing.
4 boxes of pectin at just under $10.
Grapes are free aside from labor on 40 year old Bluebell vines. Canning equipment and jars are well used and reused, so will also be considered free.
Cost is $0.074/oz
So the profit is roughly $0.025 per ounce or $7 total. Comparing to premium jams, which I think is justifiable, that works out to more like $0.2/oz or $54. Keep in mind this was about half of the total grape production from 2019, kept frozen.
So I either made almost minimum wage, or made almost nothing per hour, depending on what you compare the product to. And of course, I had fun.