Canning classes expand to meet demand
Agriculture in the Ozarks
by David Burton • Published in the News-Leader
Article link> http://www.news-leader.com/article/2010 ... eet-demand
Due to popular demand, University of Missouri Extension in Greene County has expanded the popular hands-on series known as "Home Canning the Safe Way" for the summer of 2010. The new series of food preservation classes includes sessions on low-acid pressure canning, jams and jellies, pickles, salsa and freezing and drying foods. To accommodate as many people as possible, each class topic will be offered twice on the same day, with sessions offered from 1 to 3:30 p.m. and 6 to 8:30 p.m.
All classes are limited to the first 20 to pre-register and will be held in the second floor classroom of the MU Extension Center at 833 Boonville in Springfield. (These classes include.)
*"Home Canning the Safe Way," which provides instruction on low-acid pressure cooking, will be offered on May 10 and June 21.
*"Making Fantastic Jams and Jellies" will be offered on May 17 and June 22.
*"How to Pickle" will be offered in Greene County on May 24 and June 23.
*The class "Salsa From Your Garden" will be offered on June 7 and June 24.
*"Drying and Freezing Produce," a new class brought about by frequent requests last year, will be offered on June 14 and 25.
The classes will be taught by Tammy Roberts, nutrition and health education specialist with University of Missouri Extension. Over the past five years, Roberts has driven more than 200,000 miles teaching food preservation and nutrition classes in southwest Missouri. During 2009, she taught 29 home food- preservation classes to more than 700 people, most of them in Greene County.
"Last year, I saw more demand for canning classes than I have ever seen for any single class," Roberts said. "I have been asking people in my canning classes why they are so interested in canning. For some, it is thrift. For a significant number of people, the reason is that they want to know where their food came from and how it was handled, so they choose to do it themselves."
The classes will cover the basics of home food preservation and offer a hands-on portion so participants can move into the kitchen and roll up their sleeves. Participants will receive MU Extension guide sheets that include basic information on the class topic.
"I think Extension is recognized as the source for reliable information on almost everything. We are in most counties and many people, including me, grew up knowing that's where you go if you don't have the answer yourself," Roberts said. "That is part of why residents keep coming back to us for reliable information on things like home food preservation."
Advance registration is necessary and can be made by calling the MU Extension office in Greene County at 862-9284 or downloading a registration form from the Greene County Extension Web site at http://extension.missouri.edu/greene.
David Burton, civic communication specialist for University of Missouri Extension, 833 Boonville Ave., Springfield, MO 65802, can be reached at 862-9284 or via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.