Monday, January 17, 2011

Shelf Reliance Harvest 72”: A Review

Whew! Finally my Internet seems to be working again. Hopefully I'm back up and running again permanently. Keep your fingers crossed!

My Fed Ex man really must hate seeing our address pop up on his list of daily deliveries. He had the pleasure of delivering yet another heavy, unwieldy load to my house today. He shouldn’t complain too much –at least I did him the courtesy of  shoveling our sidewalk clear of snow!

So what did my long-suffering delivery man bring? These boxes:

They held a Shelf Reliance Harvest 72” Food Rotation System (FRS), which is merely a fancy way of saying a canned goods shelving unit. I’ve wanted to get one of these things for the longest time, but had to wait since these suckers are ridiculously expensive. Shelf Reliance has got to be making a killing on them.

There are two places that I know of to buy a Shelf Reliance FRS. One is the Shelf Reliance website. The other is at Costco, either in selected stores or online. It is far less expensive to buy it through Costco if you are a member. Since I am not a member, I would have to pay a 5% penalty if I ordered it through them. Even so, it would have been cheaper for me to buy it there if I had not happened to have a $10 gift card to Shelf Reliance.

It took nearly two weeks for my FRS to arrive, but thankfully, on the day it came, Hubby Dear didn’t have to work and he could put it together. It is definitely a two person job for at least the first part of the build. It wasn’t too hard to follow the instructions and put together (much more intuitive than The Can Organizer, for example), but it was fussy. You definitely need to know what cans you are planning on storing on the FRS so that you have them on hand to set the track diameter. You also need to have either a rubber mallet or a block of wood and hammer to pound the pieces together.  It took us quite a bit of time to put together – there are many pieces and we spent a lot of time trying to figure out the best configuration.

The metal rails up

Installing the can tracks. You need to have your cans available to help you size the openings.  

Here’s what it looked like when it was completely constructed and loaded with my canned goods:

The Harvest 72” is the largest unit Shelf Reliance sells. It comes with 3 small, 1 medium, and 1 large (#10 can size) sized tracks, although you can customize it to your needs (for an extra fee, of course).

Things I don’t like about the Shelf Reliance Harvest FRS:

They used cheap paint on the rails and it was already flaking off in spots before we even began to construct it. Shelf Reliance definitely needs to use a more heavy-duty paint. There is no excuse for shoddy workmanship when you are charging over $300 for some bits of metal and plastic. (Although I like this item overall, I have to say I do think it is overpriced.) Also, the very prominent Shelf Reliance logo on the front of the shelving unit looked like it had been applied by someone who had drank a little too much cough syrup. Now, if a person is OCD enough to get excited about plunking down the money for a FRS, you know they are going to notice those sorts of things!

I do like the cute magnetic labels that come with the FRS, but they are easily knocked off. I’ve already lost one that way and my kids haven’t even been playing with it yet.

One of the cute little magnetic labels

I also wish that it came with a board or shelf across the top of the unit. I’m going to get Hubby Dear to buy and cut one to size because I can’t afford to not to use that space. My little basement storage room is quickly getting very full.

If you buy one of these, don’t expect that it will hold a whole year’s worth of cans or anything. I still have cans in several other locations in my house.

What I love about the Shelf Reliance FRS:

I love organizational products, so something like this is right up my alley. It's really cool. It might look like there is a lot of wasted space between the rails, but once I have completely filled it up with cans, there really won’t be. Right now I only have it about halfway full, if that. 

Side view
It can hold up to 460 cans while only taking up about seven square feet of floor space. It is not too difficult to set up and is very easy to use. Simply load the cans in and you have automatic rotation.

Depending on how much space all my buckets and home canned items end up taking up, I might get another Shelf Reliance System. It's definitely a great convenience and will encourage me to use and rotate through our food storage.


  1. Thanks so much for the thorough review! This looks just marvelous!

  2. I love my Harvester!! Food rotation just can't get any easier. We go shopping and my kids B-E-G me to put away the groceries! I got mine at a great deal when I attended a home party. You can get special pricing by requesting an account at (even if you don't live in Texas!)

  3. The Harvest system is awesome. And it doesn't have to be quite as expensive as you think (although it is still quite an investment). Shelf Reliance is now selling their products through home parties. You are guaranteed the lowest price if you purchase through a home party consultant (even if you dont' attend a party). The Harvest is actually on sale for $264.99 right now if you purchase through a consultant. You can request to have a consultant in your area contact you here: Or, if you'd like, I would be more than happy to answer any questions you might have. I am a consultant in California. You can see my website (and contact info) here: Good luck and thanks for the honest, and positive review! I will pass on the comments about the paint, logo, and labels. You can purchase a shelf for the top ($19.49), but it may be less expensive to have your husband make one!