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LA resurrects Master Food Preserver program

In what is probably a natural outgrowth of the emerging vegetable gardening and local food movement, Los Angeles County UC Cooperative Extension is bringing back a Master Food Preserver program.

The program was discontinued 10 years ago when home canning fell out of favor in modern kitchens. Interest has rebounded. A story in the LA Weekly blog Squid Ink says Master Food Preserver Ernest Miller and UC Cooperative Extension nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor Brenda Roche will relaunch the program in March.

Like Master Gardeners, Master Food Preservers are volunteers who receive in-depth training from UC Cooperative Extension experts then share their knowledge with the general public. Miller will teach the 12-week series to approximately 15 students at the UC Cooperative Extension office in East Los Angeles.

"The class is truly amazing, it covers every aspect of safe food preservation from canning to pressure canning, of course, but also freezing, dehydration, curing, smoking, fermentation and brewing," Miller was quoted. "It is a hands-on class and nearly every week the participants will make and take home various preserved products."

Miller a chef at The Farmer's Kitchen, a project of the non-profit Sustainable Economic Enterprises, which manages eight farmer's markets in LA. He earned his Master Food Preserver designation form UC Cooperative Extension in San Bernardino County and also recently became a UC Master Gardener.

Miller writes a blog about home food preservation, PreserveNation

LA Master Food Preserver applicants will be selected for the program based on their prior food preservation, culinary and volunteer experience, the article said. The students must pay a $120 class fee and commit to a minimum of 30 hours of volunteer work per year.

Home canning is once again growing in popularity.
Home canning is once again growing in popularity.

Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011 at 9:56 AM

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