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Minnesota Farmers' Market Association 

Food Science Library

Whether selling food at a farmers' market or direct from your farm or home, food safety is paramount. Below you'll find links to various science-based articles on food safety. Questions? Email

 Caution: Canning With Fats & Oils The exception to using oils in canning is when the recipe has been scientifically tested—of which there are three.  The USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning includes tested recipes for marinated whole mushroomsmarinated peppers, and pickled three-bean salad.  Each of these recipes includes added acid ingredients (lemon juice, vinegar) as well as preparation steps to ensure adequate acidity of the vegetable.  The amount of oil is small, and the acidity is adequate to control the pH. Follow the recipes exactly. 

Food Safety Foundations: 3-Part Series Amy Johnston, University of Minnesota Extension

1st: "What Is Foodborne Illness?" Presented Jan. 4, 2024.

     Click this link for the webinar recording on Youtube

2nd: "Factors That Influence Pathogen Growth." Register here for Feb. 13, 2024 | 2-3pm

3rd: "Cleaning and Sanitation Best Practices."  Register here for Mar. 11, 2024 | 530-630pm     

Freeze-dried foods
    Any bacteria that were present on the raw food product prior to freeze-drying may become active again. The process of freeze-drying does not kill bacteria but rather slows bacterial growth by reducing its ability to access water.

    Fresh, cut fruits in cottage foods

    Fresh or raw, cut fruit is a potentially hazardous food because it requires refrigeration to prevent the growth of bacteria that may cause illness when eaten.

    Listeria & candied and caramel-coated apples 

    Based on research following a multistate foodborne illness outbreaks related to caramel apples, caramel apples with inserted sticks are now deemed a potentially hazardous food.

    Safe Changes & Substitutions to Tested Canning Recipes

    Water activity values of a list of select foods
      Source: (2007)

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      across Minnesota and our Tribal Nations.

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