Food Safety & Preservation
Don’t forget to have the dial gauge on your pressure canner tested. It is recommended to have this gauge tested every year.
The Portage County UW-Extension offers pressure canner testing at no charge. Please call 715-346-1316 to set up an appointment. Appointments are usually available the same day depending on staff availability. Our office is open between the hours of 7:30 AM – 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday. Testing usually takes between 5-10 minutes.
Summertime is Food Preservation Time – Lunch & Learn at the County Extension Office located on the 2nd Floor of the Courthouse Annex, 1462 Strongs Avenue, Stevens Point, WI 54481 – 12 noon to 1 pm
June 3 FREEZING PRODUCE – Learn tips to preserving fresh green beans, peas, strawberries and other produce for year-round enjoyment.
June 17 MAKING JAMS & JELLIES – Preserve the taste of perfectly ripe fruit in homemade jams and jellies and consider new gift ideas in jellied fruit and vegetable products.
July 1 CANNING VEGETABLES SAFELY – Safely preserve your garden’s bounty of vegetables with canning.
July 15 CANNING TOMATOES & TOMATO PRODUCTS – Whether pressure canning whole tomatoes, canning salsa in a boiling water canner, or even making tomato jam – options abound for safely preserving tomatoes.
Aug 5 TIME TO MAKE PICKLES – Your family will enjoy the taste of summer with safe, high quality quick-pack pickles (and we’ll discuss genuine dills & sauerkraut too!)
Aug 19 DRYING FOODS AT HOME – Wondering what to do with those few onions, tomatoes, carrots or tomatoes sitting in the crisper? Try dehydrating them to make a flavorful soup base. And consider dried fruit as your go-to snack for hungry kids home from school.
Aug 26 SUCCESSFUL STORAGE OF GARDEN PRODUCE – Extend the season as long as possible by properly storing your garden’s produce.
Hear the latest updates based on research being conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Portage County Master Food Preserver Program
A Master Food Preserver is a person who takes classes and is then certified by the UW-Extension. A certified Master Food Preserver must volunteer 20 hours of their time to food preservation and safety related issues in the community. Since the programs beginning in July of 2011, 5 people have become Master Food Preservers. The Master Food Preservers have also planned and implemented various programs throughout the year.
Master Food Preserver Q&A
Anyone can call 715-346-1316 and ask specific questions about food safety, or food preservation. Calls will be answered from 7:30am-4:30pm Monday-Friday. Questions may also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. No question is too strange!
Fresh for All Seasons is a volunteer organization created by the Central Wisconsin Resiliency Project in conjunction with the UW-Extension. Fresh for All Season volunteers can and freeze excess produce donated by community members and community efforts like Community Giving Gardens and Plant-A-Row activities. After processing, all the finished products go to local food pantries for year-round enjoyment.
Master Food Preserver Demonstrations & Workshops
As workshops dates become available, they will be posted. For more information call 715-346-1316 or stop by the Portage County UW-Extension Office located in the Ruth Gilfry Center.
UW-Extension Preservation Publications
*Most of these publications are available to view (pdf) or print for free. They can also be obtained at the Portage County UW-Extension for the cost of printing.
Publications with recipes
- Canning Fruits Safely
- Canning Meat, Wild Game, Poultry & Fish Safely
- Canning Salsa Safely
- Canning Vegetables Safely
- Freezing Fruits & Vegetables
- Homemade Pickles & Relishes
- Making Jams, Jellies & Fruit Preserves
- Tomatoes Tart & Tasty
- Wisconsin’s Wild Game: Enjoying the Harvest
- Make your own Sauerkraut
- Freezing Home Prepared Foods
- Guidelines for Making Safe Jerky at Home
- Maple Syrup Making
Publications that do not include specific recipes
- Using & Caring for a Pressure Canner
- Keeping Food Safe
- Using Clear Jel (A great way to thicken jam or jelly~the best substitute for pectin)
- Specific Equipment & Supplies for Food Preservation
- Safe Canning Methods
Other Helpful Resources
- National Center for Home Food Preservation – A great how-to website for beginners looking for research based preservation knowledge.
- Food Safety & Health – A resource created by University of Madison about food safety and preservation.
- Ball Company – A wonderful place for tested recipes and new canning innovations.
- Food Safety in Your Home – A source for education on food safety in your home.