"Golden Harvest" Mason Jar

Many different dietary practices, combined with a philosophy of “do-it-yourself’ and “grow-your-own, ”appeared and stayed as major alternatives to mass-marketed, mass-produced food, which political and cultural activists of the 1960’s and 1970’s, termed “slave” food, “corporate” food, and “white-bread.” Questioning how the food Americans ate was produced, prepared, and consumed, many advocated new models of food production and new diets. The 1960’s saw the introduction of many foods, once common only in Asia, adopted and adapted by those who had rejected mainstream food and foodways, and among these were foods that were thought to be “healthier” than those rejected. Before many of the ingredients common to the new and “healthier” foods became mass produced and common in grocery stores, as many did in the 1980’s, aficionados would make their own yogurt and bean sprouts.
Adventurous cooks, like the one who adapted this standard timeless Mason canning jar with a piece of screening, c. 1970, could grow their own sprouts, adding water to mung beans (a common Asian bean used for sprouting and for making bean pastes) in the jar and rinsing the beans every day until they sprouted. They ate the sprouts cooked and raw. Many commercial versions of bean sprouters (like yogurt makers) are available in 2012, though many different varieties of commercially produced fresh bean sprouts are now commonly available in produce sections of grocery stores.
Physical Description
glass (overall material)
metal (overall material)
overall: 7 in x 3 3/4 in; 17.78 cm x 9.525 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Food Culture
Food Processing
See more items in
Home and Community Life: Domestic Life
FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000
Food: Transforming the American Table, 1950-2000
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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