Our FAQ page is constantly evolving. If you don't see an answer here, please Contact Us. We'll respond and add your question to the page.
Where can I buy your products? If you live in NE Florida, come see us each weekend at Riverside Arts Market or the St. Augustine Amphitheater Farmer's Market each and every Saturday. You can also place an order for Local Pickup.
How does Local Pickup work? Choose items to add to your cart and go to Checkout. At Checkout you'll select 'Local Pickup' and pick your date and time. Your order will be in the fridge right by our front door, its self access.
Where is The Pickle Factory? Our address is 5913 St. Augustine Road in Jacksonville, Florida 32257. (Please note we are NOT located on OLD St. Augustine Road.) Nearest cross street is University Blvd. When heading north (towards downtown), we are on the right, about 1/8 of a mile past the Goodwill and across the street from Publix. There is a storefront facing the street with a Grabber Construction sign, head down that industrial parking lot, look for the green door on the right hand side.
Can I drop in to The Pickle Factory and buy products? Because we are a working factory, with production quotas and daily deadlines, we ask that you order online and select Local Pickup. This allows us to plan for the production and packaging of your order and you will not have to wait. The Local Pickup option is a win-win solution: you can walk in and pick up your order and we can plan for this.
Do you give tours of The Pickle Factory? Not generally. We do not have an open-door policy for tours nor can we accommodate drop in requests for impromptu tours. We're a working factory with production quotas and daily deadlines. For school groups and educational tours, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you sell to local stores? Yes! You can find a listing of the retailers we sell to on our Where To Buy page. Please note that because these are independently run businesses, we have very little control over the breadth of product selection and real-time inventory levels on the shelves. You may want to call ahead of your store visit to see that the items you're looking for is in stock.
How long do the products keep? Your products will keep in refrigeration for up to one year, however they taste best if eaten within the first 3-6 months that you receive them.
There’s white film growing on the surface of my brine, are they okay? Another predictable (although less common) behavior of live, fermented food is the formation of a white film on the surface of the brine after you open your products. This is kahm yeast and it can form as a result of oxygen exposure to fermented food. Kahm yeast is completely harmless, you can spoon or rinse it off and continue to enjoy your products. Kahm yeast is (literally) part of life, and not an indication of a defect in the products.
The ice packs in my shipment are melted and my products aren’t cold. What’s up? First of all DO NOT throw away your order if the ice packs are melted or the products aren't cool. The insulated packaging has kept the ferments "cool enough” in transit, giving your goods an additional day of coolness once it has shipped. Fermented products can safely be transported unrefrigerated and can stay out of refrigeration for several days (similar to red wine, which when opened can be stored on the counter top at room temp for several days.) There is no danger of spoilage or harm to the product within standard transit times. Interestingly, lactobacillus probiotics remain live in temperatures ranging from below freezing up to 143 degrees F (the temperature of pasteurization is 144 degrees F, which kills bacteria.) For temperature context, “lukewarm” is ~95 degrees F and a hot bowl of soup is 180 degrees F. Fermented foods occupy a fascinating middle ground between shelf stable goods and “must be refrigerated” goods. If your products have arrived at room temp or warm, they are JUST FINE to consume and yes, they are still live and probiotic. Placing them in the fridge upon arrival will halt any fermentation that’s resumed during transit.
A product in my order is puffed up, it looks like its about to burst. What should I do? A result of moderate temperature fluctuation in transit is that the fermentation process may resume slightly, causing the product to “wake up”, which can mean the creation of CO2 gas. This fermentation gas may cause a pouch to puff up. A newer ferment is extra lively and may be very gassy. Help your ferment out: relieve the gas by burping your pouches as needed. If you do not burp your products, the gas will eventually escape (it has to go somewhere), and the package will leak.
Something leaked in transit. What should I do? Leakage isn’t common, but it can happen. Here’s what to do. First, give your product a rinse. Second, the product is perfectly safe to consume. Transfer to an alternate container, and make replacement brine (1 cup water: 1 Tablespoon sea salt/or to taste.) Eat and enjoy!
My products are just a smidge too salty for my taste, what can I do? We salinity test and taste test each batch to ensure consistency, but sometimes a ferment can run on the salty side, especially with products that spent their time fermenting closer to the bottom of the barrel. To reduce the saltiness of any product, here’s what to do: drain off a portion of brine and replace with water. Osmosis will remove the salt and balance the salinity within a day or so. The amount you drain out depends on how “too salty” you deem that product to be, we advise to start conservatively so you don’t drain out too much and blanch the flavor. If this happens, just add salt back in.