FAQs — EDEN Organic Tomatoes & Sauerkraut

Does Eden use citric acid or other processing aids in canned tomatoes?

No. Eden does not use GMO derived citric acid, lye, or other FDA allowable chemical processing aids.

Why amber glass for tomatoes?

The driving force for packaging EDEN tomatoes in amber glass was avoidance of bisphenol-A (BPA), bisphenol-S (BPS), and phthalates required in the linings of cans for high acid foods like tomatoes. At that time, the canning industry / government provided no BPA free option for high acid foods. In 2016, in response to public demands on the can manufacturers, BPA, BPS, and phthalate free high-acid can became available. All EDEN canned tomatoes were updated to these new cans.

Additionally, light damages flavor, phytonutrients, and colors of food. Photooxidation (light damage) is systemic in food stores where fluorescent lighting that is particularly damaging reduces food quality. Amber glass is difficult to get and more costly, but it best protects food. Eden offers the only tomatoes in the U.S.A. packed in amber glass that protects flavor and nutrients from damage.

Amber Glass tomato items are: organic EDEN Spaghetti Sauce, No Salt Spaghetti, Pizza Pasta Sauce, Crushed Tomatoes, and Crushed Tomatoes w/ Onion, Garlic, and Basil.

Is the amber glass tomato jar lid BPA free?

A search for a lid for our glass jars again confirmed that 'there's no such thing as a perfect food package.' Regardless, we found the best there is.

The inside of the twist caps has two coats of sealer between the food and the metal of the cap. The first applied coating has BPA present. The second protective sealant does not, isolating the first coating from contact with the jar's contents.

Potential for migration of BPA is reduced by the following:

  1. An additional protective vinyl base overcoat facing the food, isolating the epoxy BPA containing coating. The coating containing BPA can never be in contact with the food.
  2. The cap's inner surface is separated from the food by an area of air/vacuum.
  3. The surface area exposed to the food is substantially less for a twist cap than for canned goods.

Today's most stringent regulations for food safety is in the European Union where these twist caps have been tested as safe in regards to BPA for use on food products. Currently, we are told, there is no known viable alternative to BPA based epoxy coatings that provides the same level of corrosion resistance and is as safe. We continually push our cap suppliers to develop BPA free constructed caps that will deliver required corrosion resistance, shelf life, and safety.

Are Eden Foods' canned tomatoes packed in cans that contain bisphenol-A (BPA), bisphenol-S (BPS), or phthalates?

No. Organic EDEN tomatoes are packed in cans with a lining that is free of BPA, BPS, and phthalates that are specially designed for high-acid foods like tomatoes. This new can lining is substantially similar to the one we use for canned beans that are low-acid foods.

What is the shelf life of EDEN Organic canned tomatoes?

Three years. A 'Best if Used by' date code is on the top of each jar or can. The code starts with the year's four digits followed by a two-letter month abbreviation and then the numbers of the day. Example: 2013MA05

How many organic tomato items does Eden Foods offer?

  • EDEN Spaghetti Sauces — 25 oz. amber glass
  • EDEN No Salt Spaghetti Sauce — 25 oz. amber glass
  • EDEN Pizza Pasta Sauces — 14 oz. amber glass and 15 oz. cans
  • EDEN Crushed Tomatoes - unsalted plain — 28 oz. cans, 14 oz. and 25 oz. amber glass jars
  • EDEN Crushed Tomatoes with Onion, Garlic & Basil — 14 oz. and 25 oz. amber glass jars

Does Eden offer sodium free and low sodium canned tomatoes?

There are nine EDEN canned tomato items, five low-sodium in glass jars, and EDEN Crushed Tomatoes in 28 oz. can. There is a no salt added Spaghetti Sauce that is low sodium in glass, and there is a salted version also. There are three kinds of crushed tomatoes that have no salt added, and two that do. The nutritional information with sodium content is on Eden Foods' website, or we will send it to you if you do not have access. FYI — all tomatoes have small amounts of naturally occurring sodium.

Do EDEN Tomatoes contain the antioxidant lycopene?

Yes. Cooked tomatoes are higher in lycopene than raw. Cooking makes the lycopene more assimilable and concentrates it. Tomatoes cooked with oil additionally increase lycopene availability and absorption because lycopene is a fat-soluble antioxidant. EDEN Pizza Pasta Sauce, Spaghetti Sauce, and No Salt Spaghetti Sauce are cooked with organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil and provide us with more lycopene because of the olive oil.

Although lycopene is very beneficial, researchers have found that it is not just the lycopene alone that makes for the health benefits. In whole cooked tomatoes lycopene works with the other phytonutrients and vitamins that make it much more effective than lycopene supplements that are solely isolates or synthetic.

Are organic tomatoes higher in nutrients than non-organic?

A 10 year study conducted at the University of California "comparing organic tomatoes with standard produce found almost double the level of flavonoids - a type of antioxidant." They measured two flavonoids - quercetin and kaempferol and found, "that on average they were 79% and 97% higher respectively in the organic tomatoes than in the conventionally grown." The increase in flavonoids they say "is probably due to the absence of chemical fertilizers in organic farming."

What is so good about EDEN Tomatoes?

EDEN Tomatoes are organically grown and hand cultivated on a fifth generation Italian family farm that has been managed organically for decades. They are the finest, best tasting heirloom Roma and Napoli plum tomatoes. Hand harvested, they are washed and cooked within hours of harvest to capture their maximum nutrients and exceptional flavor.

These plum tomatoes are Italian preferred. Sweeter, fewer seeds, deep color, and firmer flesh make them better for sauces and canning. Heirloom tomatoes have more food value and better taste. EDEN Tomatoes and Sauces are made without processing aids or untoward additives — all ingredients are declared.

How is EDEN Sauerkraut made?

EDEN Sauerkraut is made of Midwestern, organic sweet cabbage. This exceptional sauerkraut is grown, fermented, and packed by a single family. Sweet cabbage is hand harvested, cored, shredded, and lactic acid fermented with EDEN Sea Salt for six weeks. For the Kimchi and Three Onion versions, all organic vegetables, spices, and herbs are added. During fermentation, the vats of sauerkraut are tended in a manner similar to a fine winery. Over nine decades of experience, traditional methods, and one family's care from seedling, to field, to the jar give organic EDEN Sauerkraut its sought after, homemade, old-world character, and beneficial qualities.

What is the shelf life of EDEN Organic Sauerkraut?

Two years. Our production code is located on the top of the lid and reflects the Best Before Date Code/Julian Date Code.

The Best Before Date Code is in the format of YYYYMMDD (first four digits = year, second two digits = month, last two digits = day of month)

The Julian date code is in the format of YJJJ (first digit = year, last three digits = Julian day of the year).

Julian Date Code Example: 9137W 1SKOG 09:35

  • The first digit (9) is the last digit of the year: 2009
  • The next three digits (137) are the 137th day of the year 2009, which was May 17th.
  • The following letter (W) is the shift code. W=morning, X=afternoon, Y=evening.
  • The next five digits (1SKOG) are an abbreviation for Sauerkraut Organic.
  • The last four digits (09:35) are the military time of day the Sauerkraut was canned, which was nine thirty five a.m.
  • Also, EDEN 18 oz sauerkrauts include "S" for plain Sauerkraut, "K" for Kimchi sauerkraut, and "TO" for Three Onion sauerkraut after the Julian date code.
This Julian Calendar (PDF) can be used to translate the Julian Date to month and day.

Why is lactic acid listed as an ingredient of EDEN Sauerkraut?

The percentage of water and sugars of cabbage varies from year to year. Some years the shredded cabbage needs a lactic acid starter. While lactic acid is always present in sauerkraut, sometimes a lactic acid starter is used. To produce sauerkraut of consistent quality, a starter culture (similar to those used in making sourdough bread, vinegar, and cheese) is introduced. The starter culture helps maintain consistency year to year and batch to batch. The starter culture is the lactic acid. It ensures the desired lactic acid fermentation. The lactic acid used in EDEN Sauerkraut is Non-GMO and plant derived.

Is EDEN Sauerkraut pasteurized?

Yes, many people confuse pasteurization with sterilization. EDEN Sauerkraut is hot-packed at 170° F (some call this pasteurized) to make it shelf stable and to create the lid seal to the jar as it is cools. Heating is minimized to keep the kraut firm. Heating eliminates bacteria that cause spoilage, and those that are potential pathogens. In contrast to sterilization, pasteurization is not intended to kill all microorganisms, only those that can cause spoilage, illness, or disease. All sauerkraut merchandised unrefrigerated is hot-packed (pasteurized) to provide shelf life without refrigeration. Very commonly, refrigerated sauerkrauts are heat-packed or flash pasteurized at 130° to 140° F to discourage spoilage and prevent damage to packaging, but this is not indicated on the packages.

What are the nutritional benefits of EDEN Sauerkraut?

Organic acids from the lactic acid fermentation in EDEN Sauerkraut aid in the digestion of foods. Fermentation of cabbage also produces isothiocyanates, a class of valuable antioxidant-like compounds. Cabbage and other cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, kale, collards, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts are the best source of nutrients called indoles. EDEN hot-packed sauerkraut is an extremely rich source of efficacious nourishment. Hot packing does not significantly affect this. Antioxidants, organic acids, enzymes, indoles, lactic acid, fiber, carbohydrates, and beneficial minerals such as iron and potassium are unaffected. There are studies that showed so-called 'heat-killed' bacteria (probiotics) produce similar results to live bacteria. Please refer to the following article:


While sauerkraut is known for its probiotics, especially homemade or non-hot packed, little is said about its prebiotics. Probiotics refer to live microorganisms that are intended to lend benefits to gut health. Prebiotics are a whole group of non-digestible fiber compounds in food that help existing beneficial bacteria in the gut grow. Researchers refer to these compounds as fiber or carbohydrates, which are composed of polysaccharides, oligosaccharides, fructo-oligosaccharides, fructans, galatans, and inulins, to name a few. Prebiotics make their way through the stomach and small intestine without being broken down by stomach acids or digestive enzymes. They are fermented by anaerobic bacteria in the large intestine, providing the gut with fuel for beneficial bacteria to multiply and thrive. When the beneficial bacteria increase, they keep harmful bacteria in check. Also, as prebiotics decompose in the body, they help produce other compounds like short-chain fatty acids, or help stimulate calcium intake, and improve the body's ability to break down food. Prebiotics also increase the feeling of fullness or satiety, aiding in healthy weight management. In short, prebiotics feed probiotics. Both are essential for gut health and overall well being.