Preserving Food Grant Received by Madison Plains FFA

ARCOPThis year the Madison Plains FFA chapter received the 2013 Agricultural and Rural Community Outreach Program (ARCOP) grant of $2500.

The money from the grant was used to purchase a laptop to record and upload photos of what the members learned, a camera to record and take pictures of the members learning and participating in the canning process, a pressure cooker, food processer, canning jars, and canning mixes.  Students brought in produce from their own gardens.

The ARCOP grant was used to teach the FFA members how to can and preserve vegetables and fruit. They were taught to first clean the produce, then chop and puree it using the food processer, third the students sanitized the jars and prepped the lids by soaking them in water, and the last step was putting the jars into the pressure cooker to release the pressure and seal the lids. During the students class period they made salsa and pickles.  Later in the year when students make apple cider they will also learn how to make applesauce and when the FFA has their strawberry sale students will learn how to make strawberry jam.

Canning and preserving food has become a lost art over the years. By the members being taught how easy and how much food can be saved, they’ve gained interest to do this outside of class.

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