Can foods safely with free dial-gauge test from Illinois Extension

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[May 25, 2023]   Home gardeners can enjoy fresh food throughout the year by canning their produce; but over time, the needle on a dial-gauge pressure canner can become inaccurate. If the dial-gauge is not measuring the correct pressure, foods inside the pressure canner may be under-processed, which increases the risk of serious illness from botulism.

Illinois Extension is offering free dial-gauge testing on Tuesday, June 20, 9 AM-3:30 PM, at the Sangamon Extension Office (700 S Airport Drive, Springfield). Reserve your 15-mintue time slot by calling 217-782-4617. Free testing can be arranged on other dates year-round by calling 217-782-4617.

“We recommend home canners have their dial-gauge pressure canners tested at least once each year to see if the needle is accurate. Testing often takes no more than 15 minutes per canner and it is well worth the visit to know what the gauge reads,” says Caitlin Mellendorf, nutrition and wellness educator with University of Illinois Extension.

A variety of foods can be canned at home through boiling water bath canning and pressure canning. Pressure canning is important when canning low-acid foods, particularly meats and vegetables.

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For more information about preserving at home, visit the Illinois Extension Food Preservation webpage or the National Center for Home Food Preservation.

University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities for programs and employment. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this program, please contact 217-782-4617. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time for meeting your access need.

ABOUT EXTENSION: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.

[SOURCE: Caitlin Mellendorn, Nutrition and Wellness Educator, University of Illinois Extension
WRITER: Amy Zepp, 4-H Program Coordinator, Sangamon County]


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