Food -- a perfect medium to teach science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) concepts. Pick and choose from a curriculum that incorporates real life experience into virtual and hands-on labs, classroom discussion guides, presentations and videos. Not only do students learn a STEM concept, they increase their awareness of food and agriculture careers that are related to the safety of the food supply.
Fall harvest season is upon us! One of the signatures of autumn is the colorful abundance of winter squash varieties and pumpkins. These beautiful fruits of fall are the key ingredient in delicious fall soups, casseroles and baked goods. How do we best store these items to make the most out of the fall harvest?
Upland game birds (i.e. pheasant, dove, grouse, partridge and wild turkey) and waterfowl are soon to grace our tables. Home cooks may be challenged with preparing a bird that was not handled properly in the field. Improper field handling, dressing and processing can contribute to off flavors, toughness and an increased risk of foodborne illness.
There are many types of legumes (also referred to as pulse crops) planted in home gardens. Just a few examples include navy beans, soybeans, chickpeas, lentils, field peas, great northern beans, lima and pinto beans. The most common preservation method used by is vine drying. However, legumes can also be preserved by cooking, freezing or canning.
Vacuum sealers offer another alternative for food preservation. They are intended to extend the storage time of refrigerated foods, dried foods and frozen foods. If the air is not removed, oxygen can cause fats to develop rancid flavors and change the food’s color, texture and flavor. Vacuum seal bags are designed to help keep meat and other foods fresh in the freezer by preventing the loss of moisture and development of freezer burn.
Apple growers can take advantage of opportunities to add value to their product through various processes and marketing venues within the state of South Dakota. The processing of apples into juice has several opportunities for marketing by the grower and/or a processor. There are a couple of question to ask when marketing apple juice, cider and other processed apple products such as apple sauce or jelly: 1) does the product need to be temperature controlled for safety and 2) is the product marketed directly to the consumer or through a third party.
Football and tailgating parties go together like peas & carrots or peanut butter & jelly. It seems you can’t have one without the other. But the one thing that we don’t want to include in the mix is a foodborne illness. Keeping food safe at a tailgating party is a challenge because a refrigerator and running water are usually not available in your outdoor kitchen.
Food drying is one of the oldest methods of preserving food for later use. Drying removes the moisture from the food so bacteria, yeast and mold cannot grow and spoil the food. Drying also slows down the action of enzymes (naturally occurring substances which cause foods to ripen), but does not inactivate them. Increasing the temperature of the food makes its moisture evaporate, and air moving over the food carries the moisture away.
Fall is here, and apple-picking season has started. Growers have several options to market their fresh apple crop. They may sell directly to the consumer at a roadside stand, at the orchard, farmer’s market, pick your own at the orchard, or through a retail or wholesale market. Selling safe apples starts in the field and must be evaluated throughout the entire process.
Once the desired pie filling has been prepared according to instructions, fill clean and hot jars leaving one inch of headspace. Process the jars using a boiling water bath canner. Load the jars in the canner one at a time and add water to cover the tops of the jars at least one inch if necessary. After the water has come to a hard boil, lower heat to a gentle boil, and boil for the required amount of time. Boiling time will vary with altitude.
Small pets and live poultry may be sold or distributed at the farmers market. In some instances a license or permit must be obtained from a government agency. Information specific to poultry and small pets is provided below.
Farmers are entrusted with the care of the animals that produce our food before it gets to our plates. Whether food is purchased in a grocery store, a farmers market, or directly from a farmer, the animals that produce the food have been provided the best possible care and handling throughout their lives to ensure the food supply is safe. The select iGrow articles will be added to as relevant topics are written discussing on-farm management practices that impact the safety of the food supply.
Meat provides protein and other essential nutrients to our diets, however, if not handled and prepared properly, it can also carry pathogens. Within this article are links to information about methods of preparing meat, handling meat safely, various cuts of meat, and other meat science topics. The select iGrow articles will be added to as relevant topics are written.
To maintain safety and quality, several factors must be considered when drying fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Keep in mind that specific food products often have recommendations that are unique to them. Drying removes the moisture from food so microorganisms such as bacteria, yeasts, and molds are less likely to grow; however, drying does not effectively destroy them.
Freezing is one of the easiest, more convenient, and least time-consuming methods of food preservation. By following specific directions for freezing food, you can enjoy high quality frozen food.
Flood, fire, national disaster, or the loss of power from high winds, snow, or ice could jeopardize the safety of your food and water. Knowing how to determine if food or water is safe and how to keep it safe will help minimize the potential loss of food and reduce the risk of food-borne illness.
Food-borne illnesses know no boundaries. They will attack all ages, from infants to seniors. Safe handling of food is critical from the farm to the table to reduce the risk of food borne illness. Use food preparation skills that will protect your family from illness or even death.
The following article contains links, resources, and publications with information for preserving low-acid foods. Check inside for more information!
Drying is one of the oldest methods of preserving food for later use. It can either be an alternative to canning and freezing or can complement these methods. Drying food is simple, safe, and easy to learn.
Jelly, jam, preserves, conserves and marmalades are fruit products that are jellied or thickened. Most are preserved by sugar. The kind of fruit used, the way it is prepared, the proportions of different ingredients, and the method of cooking determines which delicious product you will enjoy.
Acid foods are foods that contain enough acid to have a pH of 4.6 or lower, while acidified foods are those that have acid added during processing (added lemon juice or vinegar). Most fruits and tomatoes are naturally acid foods.
South Dakota currently has about sixty farmers markets. This online guidebook was created to assist new and developing markets in the state. New content will be added to this article frequently, please check back for more information.
Licensed foodservice establishments commonly prepare foods to be marketed as a packaged food item. Product dating for ready-to-eat (RTE), temperature controlled for safety foods must be marketed or consumed within a certain amount of time for safety. If a food is potentially hazardous and is held for at least 24 hours it must be labeled with a specific date for consumption or discarded.
The South Dakota Department of Health Office of Health Protection serves as the regulatory body enforcing the South Dakota Foodservice Code. If within the city of Sioux Falls, the Sioux Falls Department of Health is the regulatory authority for all foodservice types of establishments.
Consider a trip to the grocery store and vast selection available to consumers in the ready-to-eat cereal isle, as well as other areas in the store. There is a lot of information available to consumers to help them make decisions for their meal options. To assist the food industry in communicating with consumers, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration writes the Food Labeling Guide in compliance with the Federal Code of Regulations (Title 21).
The South Dakota State Legislature passed a bill in 2010 that allowed for the sale of home baked goods and home canned foods at farmer’s markets and similar venues. Refer to the publications in this article to learn what you can do regarding this law.
South Dakota State University can assist with developing nutrition fact labels for products you are developing with plans to sell, or if you simply want nutrition information for your favorite recipe.
This program consists of five fact sheets that cover critical safe food handling practices associated with food pantries associated with food pantries that receive and distribute food products. The self- study provides a medium that allows for you to receive the training when it best fits into your schedule.
A self-study for food preparation sites: Food service operations, volunteer food preparation and service sites, along with temporary food preparation and service sites are encouraged to use this program to train their staff and volunteers regarding critical safe food handling practices.
South Dakota Farmers Markets are gaining popularity as a way for small businesses to earn a profit while enabling consumers to buy local foods.
The culture and tradition in South Dakota communities relies heavily on a significant number of fundraisers and food-focused events using temporary food stands. These are run primarily with volunteers. The need for education in food safety to reduce risks of food borne illness continues to grow.
Food-borne diseases cause approximately 48 million illnesses, 128,000 hospitalizations and 3,000 deaths in the United States each year. Most cases of food-borne illness can be prevented through education on proper handling, preparation, cooking, processing cooling and storage of foods.