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MissouriFamilies.org - Food Safety

 

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Why must low acid foods be processed under pressure?


Temperature of boiling water is 212 degrees; at that temperature it is very difficult to destroy the Clostridium botulinum spores, even by lengthy processing. Clostridium botulinum thrives in a low acid food in a vacuum (without air) and produces a toxin which can cause botulism. A combination of time and temperature is recommended which will destroy the organism and keep the product safe. This necessary temperature cannot be reached in a boiling water bath; however, a steam pressure canner can reach temperatures higher than 212 degrees F.


 

Barbara Willenberg, Nutritional Sciences, University of Missouri-Columbia

 

 

 

 

 

Last update: Tuesday, May 05, 2009

 

 


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