Boris and Damson Jam

Boris Johnson has a lovely piece about how to make damson jam: and how the EU might make it illegal for you to do so then sell it.

You can sell it to raise money for the church roof. You can sell it at the side of the road, and if all else fails I can think of worse careers. And yet there is a cloud on the horizon, at present no bigger than a man\’s hand, and it is the forthcoming review of the EU\’s 2001 directive on jams, jellies, marmalades and sweetened chestnut purees.

We all know how these reviews become consultations, and how consultations become regulations; and there is a chance that someone in Brussels may decide to bring home-made jam within the scope of the regulations — and then what? We jam-makers would be obliged to state, on oath, the exact sugar content. We might be obliged to warn that jam is a potential cause of obesity, and heaven knows what else.

It is absurd that this innocent industry should have this threat lowering over it, and it is all because of the qualified majority voting — the veto-abolishing system that will be greatly extended by the new reform treaty.

Wekk, quite, we can indeed imagine such a thing happening. This directive is, after all, the one that defines carrots as fruit (that any legal system should do such an inane thing is simply proof that said legal system is a nonsense and should be abolished but that\’s another matter).

However, looking through it, I don\’t see that it currently has any let out for home made jam. It would thus appear that it is already illegal to sell the stuff without declaring its sugar content.

8 thoughts on “Boris and Damson Jam”

  1. Not quite right, Mark. It should’ve been: “and then they came for the home-made jam jam-makers and I did not protest because I was not a home-made jam jam-maker.”

  2. All is not lost. According to Article 1 (bottom left of page 1), the Directive doesn’t apply to “products intended for the manufacture of fine bakery wares, pastries or biscuits”. So you can sell your home-made jam as lomg as you say that it’s intended for those things.

    Tim adds: Ah, no, there’s another directive that covers those…..

  3. well it looks like the directive has been approved as the local health inspector has now told us that we cannot produce our product at home anymore and that it must state exactly its full contents. As we are a small local oragnic farmer this directive will probably put us out of business because we cannot afford to set up a kitchen with all the requirements . Does anymore know more surely if you boil and clean all your appliances each time you cook a few jams and syrups and you can prove this it should be enough.Also we use all organic produce from our own farm.

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