Our county's Extension home economics program is committed to providing information to help families deal with the complex issues of today.
Our programs focus on:
- Improving consumer and family skills
- Building leadership skills
We teach through:
- Local programs
- Community projects
- Group training sessions
Learn more about Extension programs and resources:
- Extension Family & Consumer Sciences
- Extension Health & Family Well-Being
- Cooperative Extension Service
Food safety is becoming more of an issue in our lives as we hear reports of food recalls such as ground turkey products contaminated with salmonella, ground beef contaminated with E. coli, and hitting closer to home, Rocky Ford cantaloupes contaminated with listeria. The CDC estimates that each year, 1 in 6 people, or 48 million, get sick from food poisoning. Of those, 128,000 are hospitalized and 3,000 die. Many individuals are aware of how we can reduce our risk of getting sick from meats by cooking to the proper internal temperatures, but there are also precautions you can take to prevent illness from produce. The publication Keeping Food Safe gives a great overview of steps you can take at home to prevent contaminating food such as refrigerator and freezer maintenance, and general food safety tips. You can get more specific guidelines of how to safely handle produce from FDA's guidelines 7 Tips for Cleaning Fruits and Vegetables.
For more information on current food recalls, you can visit the governments food safety information page at FoodSafety.gov.
The growing season is quickly winding down, which for many might mean the end of enjoying fresh, local produce for the next few months. But it doesn't have to be that way. Food preservation techniques such as canning, freezing, and drying can extend your enjoyment of fresh, wholesome, food well into next season. If you didn't grow a garden or have an orchard, you can still preserve fruits and vegetables you purchased at the farmer's market. Listed below are several resources that can help get you started if you are a beginner. If you are more experienced, it is a good opportunity to check up on any new food safety tips.