Service offers hotline for food safety queries
Call OSU extension service with food preservation questions
Oregon State University Extension Service is offering its summer food preservation and safety hotline for queries on testing pressure canner gauges, ensuring jam sets properly and preparing tomato salsa.
The hotline at 1-800-354-7319 runs 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday to Oct. 11. Extension-certified Master Food Preserver volunteers from Lane and Douglas counties take the calls.
More young people, ages 25-40, are becoming interested in local food and taking OSU Extensions Master Food Preserver training, said Nellie Oehler, the master food preserver coordinator in Lane County.
Theres a whole new generation coming up that wants to know how we did it in the old days and wants to go back to the land and back to the basics, she said.
Oehler emphasized that proper techniques must be used to ensure canned foods are high quality and safe to eat. The hotline is one of several resources, including publications and classes, which OSU Extension offers on food safety.
Master Food Preservers who staff the hotline must undergo 40 hours of training. They educate the public about safe food handling and preservation over the phone and at workshops and exhibits.
Last year, 374 new and veteran master food preservers throughout the state contributed 23,150 volunteer hours.