0414PressureCookingSafelysr.cfm Malatya Haber Test gauge, seal before using pressure canner
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Test gauge, seal before using pressure canner

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Those who borrow a pressure canner from a friend or relative or find a bargain at a garage sale are cautioned about using a pressure canner without testing the gauge and seal, a K-State Research and Extension food scientist said.

"Pressure canning gauges should be checked annually for accuracy so as not to jeopardize the food safety of home canned foods," said Karen Blakeslee, K-State Research and Extension food scientist. A gauge that is one pound off can cause a 10 percent decrease in sterilizing value. When two pounds off, there is a 30 percent decrease.

Dial pressure gauges can be replaced, she said.

Rubber seals should also be examined for wear, cracks and flexibility, as these can also be replaced, Blakeslee said.

K-State Research and Extension offices typically have the equipment or know of a source for checking pressure canning gauges, she said.

Canning jars and rings can typically be re-used; lids should not be re-used, Blakeslee said.

Check canning jars at garage, auction or second hand stores carefully before buying; jars should be free of cracks and chips, and the rim intact for proper sealing.

More information about home food preservation is available at K-State Research and Extension offices throughout the state and online at www.ksre.ksu.edu and www.rrc.ksu.edu (Rapid Response Center).



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