How Cans are made today

  1. Most food cans in UK are made from steel made using molten iron.  Iron ore is mixed with coke and limestone where it is then heated to a very high temperature in a blast furnace.  The molten iron is then poured into a vessel, where a percentage of recycled steel is added along with oxygen to produce steel.
  2. The steel is rolled into huge coils and has a fine coating of tin or chromium oxide to protect it from oxidation before it is sent to canmakers worldwide.
  3. For acidic foods, like tomatoes or rhubarb, a thin coating of lacquer is applied before the can bodies are stamped out.
  4. Food cans can be made using two or three pieces. 
  5. In three piece can-making rectangles are cut out of steel to form a cylinder and the edges are welded together. The bottom end is then seamed on. 
  6. When making cans from two pieces, a disc of metal is reformed into a cylinder with an integral end. To improve strength and durability, cans are beaded with concentric circles around the middle.
  7. Empty cans are then stacked and sent to a canning factory.

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