Tomato plants are beginning to yield, and with the new crop comes a new activity: home canning. But whether you’re canning whole tomatoes, homemade ketchup, pasta sauce or anything in between, adding acid to canned tomato products is a must, according to University of Wisconsin-Extension food safety specialist Barbara Ingham.
“Tomatoes can be preserved by canning, drying, freezing or pickling,” says Ingham. “And when foods are home-canned, the safety depends primarily on the amount of acid in the product.” Though tomatoes are usually considered a high-acid food, food safety researchers now know that the pH (acid) levels of tomatoes and other fruits can vary greatly because of many factors, including climate, soil, cultivar variety and ripeness. Because of this variation in acid levels, the United States Department of Agriculture recommends adding acid to all home-canned tomato products.
Contact: Barbara Ingham, (608)263-7383 or firstname.lastname@example.org