Tin of roast veal, 1823.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
This tin was manufactured by Donkin, Hall and Gamble in 1823, for the 1824-1825 expedition in search of the North West Pasage, which was commanded by Rear-Admiral Sir William Edward Parry (1790-1855). The 7lb tin was opened in 1939 by its previous owners, The British Food Manufacturing Industries Research Asociation (BFMIRA), to investigate the state of preservation of the veal, and acquired by the Science Museum in 1965. In 1810 Nicholas Appert, a French chef, was the first person to perfect the technique of heating food to high temperatures to kill bacteria and then preserving it in glas jars sealed with cork. The following year, two Englishmen, Donkin and Hall, developed tin vacuum cans and set up the first food canning factory.