Botulism and Canning Safety

While home canning is safe there are dangers in canning.  One of them is Botulism.  This is a potentially deadly illness caused by a germ that grows in the soil and produces a toxin under certain conditions.  It can affect your nerves and even paralyze you.  Some symptoms include:

  • Double or blurred vision
  • Slurred speech
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Drooping eyelids

Click here learn more about food canning techniques recommended by the USDA.

Low Acids Foods

Low-Acids foods have a PH level which is more than 4.6.  These types of food encourage the growth of the botulinum bacteria.  The CDC recommends only using a pressure canner for low-acid foods.  A water bath canner for low-acide foods should never be used.

Here is a list of some low acide foods:

  • All Meat, fish and seafood
  • Milk
  • Some fruits
  • Almost all vegetables including asparagus, greens beans, beets, corn, and potatoes)

Click here for the “Complete Guide to Home Canning” published by the USDA.USDAHomeCanning

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