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Food Safety Competencies for Educators Teaching Home Food Preservation Techniques

Purpose and Goals of Food Preservation

1.  Describe why people preserve food at home.

2.  List desirable quality characteristics of fresh and processed/preserved foods for home use.

3.  Describe the differences between food spoilage and food safety.

4.  Explain economic considerations to be made in making decisions about preserving foods at home.

5.  Describe the nutritional contributions of preserved foods to the diet.

6.  Describe the appropriate use of preserved foods for people with diet-related diseases.

7.  Demonstrate the ability to select high quality raw products for food preservation.

8.  Explain and compare changes in nutrient value of foods caused by major food preservation methods. 

9.  Analyze and summarize specific costs and economic considerations in preserving food at home.

10.  Analyze health considerations for in preserving foods at home for specific needs clientele.

Scientific Principles

1.  Describe growth factors for microorganisms.

2.  Describe the significance of spore-forming microorganisms in home preserved foods.

3.  Describe enzymatic and non-enzymatic reactions in food that cause loss of quality or spoilage in food.

4.  Describe how various methods of home food preservation control microbial growth.

5.  Describe pretreatment procedures used in home food preservation to control enzymes and color reactions.

6.  Explain the effects of high sugar and salt concentrations on microorganisms.

7.  Recognize changes in foods that are the result of chemical reactions and microbial actions.

8.  Explain principles of heat penetration in canning.

9.  Demonstrate methods of blanching and pretreating foods for color control.

10.  Explain the relationship of emerging pathogens and the changes needed in past food preservation recommendations.

11.  Explain the research methods used to establish canning processes.

12.  Explain the basic science of fermentations used for pickling purposes.

13.  Explain the preservation of both acidified and minimally processed refrigerated foods.

Recommended Methods

1.  Describe traditional methods of food preservation recommended for use at home.

2.  Identify equipment and supplies needed for home food preservation.

3.  List characteristics of good quality processing equipment.

4.  Identify sources for recommended equipment and supplies.

5.  Describe unsafe methods of home food preservation.

6.  List and use recommended sources of home food preservation methods.

7.  Demonstrate procedures for preserving food at home.

8.  Explain essential differences between canning high- and low-acid food.

9.  Demonstrate recommended methods of equipment management and care.

10.  Demonstrate the ability to test accuracy of dial gauges for home pressure canners.

11.  Identify foods that cannot be preserved at home.

12.  Describe methods for more specialized home preserved products.

13.  Describe methods of food preservation that meet challenges of special dietary needs.

14.  Explain practices in preserving foods at home and using preserved foods that can decrease the nutritional value of the products.

16.  Explain the differences in methods utilized for commercially processed foods and recommended home food preservation procedures.

17.  Describe methods for more specialized home preserved products such as curing and smoke preservation.

18.  Analyze and select additional resources with acceptable science-based information on specialized processes and preservation methods.

Storage and Use of Preserved Foods

1.  Describe recommended storage practices and conditions for home preserved food.

2.  Explain the meaning and limitations of shelf life estimates for stored foods under room temperature, refrigerated, and frozen storage.

3.  Describe characteristics of spoiled and potentially unsafe home preserved food.

4.  Explain how to de-toxify suspect home canned foods.

5.  Demonstrate how to label foods and prepare home preserved food for storage.

6.  Demonstrate recognition of spoiled and potentially unsafe home home preserved food.

Analysis of Problems

1.  Identify recommended sources of information for identifying, describing and preventing common problems in preserved foods.

2.  Explain identifying characteristics in home preserved foods related to common problems.

3.  Explain how to identify and prevent problems in home preserved foods.

4.  Demonstrate how to use a flow chart to analyze potential hazards in home preserved foods.

5.  Analyze the effect(s) of deviations from recommended practices on the safety of a home preserved food.

Fair and Competition Judging of Preserved Foods

1.  Identify recommended resources for describing acceptable fair or competition entries.

2.  Identify recommended methods, procedures and forms for judging home preserved foods.

3.  Describe standards for accepting and judging fair or competition entries.

4.  Demonstrate the ability to judge home preserved foods in competitive events, including fairs.

5.  Develop contest guidelines and demonstrate ability to manage a competitive event with preserved foods.

Regulations Affecting Small Food Entrepreneurs

1.  Identify resources available to help food processing entrepreneurs start a business.

2.  Describe applicable regulations for food processing entrepreneurs and the roles of various regulatory agencies involved.

3.  Explain (in general terms) the concepts of, and steps in, the HACCP system.

4.  Explain steps a food processing entrepreneurs must follow to begin product development and a business plan.

5.  Describe which processing industries are subject to key regulations such as HACCP.

6.  Demonstrate how a food entrepreneur can begin HACCP flow charts and identification of critical control points.