The Sustainable Table: PremRose Edibles

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CRESWELL, Ore. — What’s your favorite kind of jam? You can get almost every kind of fruit or berry flavor, but why stop there?

A local woman is putting a flowery twist on an old favorite.

Tucked away in the hills outside of Creswell, Linda Shumate is putting the finishing touches on several jars of her PremRose Edibles goodies–products like rose petal jam.

“I just like making products that people can enjoy,” Shumate said. “It took me 10 years to get the recipe.”

Shumate cooks up the jam using very basic–and organic–ingredients.

“It’s things like sugar, rose petals, water, citric acid, citrus pectin. Done,” Shumate said.

The recipe’s easy. Its origin is more complicated.

“I had experienced eating rose petal jam in many other countries and when we came here, I saw these bushes in my mother-in-law’s yard and I thought, ‘Hmmm,'” Shumate said.

That was back in 1979. It took nearly 20 years for Shumate’s idea to evolve into PremRose Edibles, which is blossoming.

“I should hook up a video sometime for my own personal YouTube. The shock in people’s faces. That’s the greatest part of my job is that I get to feed most people their first bite of roses ever, and I get the funniest reactions,” Shumate said.

But Shumate says most people like it. Some can’t leave without it.

“Roses are like giving the gift of a bouquet in a jar, right alongside that other bouquet to someone you love–and to yourself,” Shumate said.

You can find the edible bouquet all over Eugene and beyond.

“It’s available in two stores in Corvallis now and about four in Portland, so I’m really excited about that,” Shumate said.

Shumate’s getting people to stop and taste the roses one jar at a time.

“Eat it. Decide for yourself if you like it and I’m happy,” Shumate said. “I just enjoy giving people things they like to eat.”

You can get the rose petal jam at the Kiva, Capella’s, Sundance and Market of Choice. Shumate also has a booth at the Lane County Farmer’s Market and Sprout Marketplace.

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