OSU’s food preservation and safety hotline open for canning season

July 11, 2016
Master Food Preservers are on hand to answer your questions. Photo by Lynn Ketchum.
Master Food Preservers are on hand to answer your questions. Photo by Lynn Ketchum.

CORVALLIS, Ore. -- Oregon State University’s food preservation and safety hotline has opened for the season.

The toll-free hotline at 800-354-7319 runs until Oct. 14 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. When the hotline is closed, callers can leave a message. Additionally, many Extension offices offer free pressure gauge testing.

Master Food Preservers, who have completed 40 hours of training, answer question ranging from how to avoid botulism to how to convert grandma’s recipe for pie filling to modern standards. The hotline gets thousands of questions a year.

“The most important part of safe and healthy food preservation is finding current, tested instructions, and following them,” said Jeanne Brandt, Extension Master Food Preserver program coordinator. “Food preservation research is an ongoing process, so there are a lot of recent changes in canning recommendations and new equipment and products. Using the most current and research-based instructions will help ensure your products are safe, healthy and delicious.” 

Most commonly, people ask about preserving salsa, tomatoes and tuna. OSU Extension offers publications on each: Salsa Recipes for Canning, Canning Seafood and Canning Tomatoes and Tomato Products.

For more information, go to the OSU Extension website on food preservation. OSU Extension's Ask an Expert service also takes online questions about food preservation.

Author: Kym Pokorny
Source: Jeanne Brandt