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Old 08-23-2007, 12:33 PM   #1
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Canning green beans question

I found out yesterday that a friend of mine canned up her green beans in a boiling water bath because she didn't have a pressure canner. She left them in the canner for 3 hours, thinking that would make them safe.
I know some older people who used to do that, but everything I've read says that method is unsafe.
I don't want my friend to die from botulism. What do you all know about this?

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Old 08-23-2007, 12:41 PM   #2
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Miss Connie we have always and forever "pressure" canned beans. I don't think the hot water bath will work long term.
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:41 PM   #3
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After 3 hours in a hot water bath, I'd imagine she's cooked the life out of them. However, all the information I have and any I've found says to use a pressure canner. I don't know if I would trust the beans if they were done in a water bath.

You might contact your local extension service and talk to someone there about the situation.
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:57 PM   #4
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That is not safe! The pressure cooker has a higher temperature that will kill the botulism bacteria. Water bath canning is only good for foods high in acids like tomatoes. The acid and 212 degree temperature of boiling water is enough for high acid foods. For low acid foods you have to have temperatures around 250 degrees. My mom is a canning nut and goes on for hours about safety in canning since she had a sister that got real sick from a bad canning job. I was going to try canning one time with boiling water and mom enlightened me with several pages of FDA literature. I could not find that online but I did find these sites.
http://www.uwex.edu/ces/cty/kewaunee...06backpage.pdf
FDA/CFSAN - Food Safety A to Z Reference Guide
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Old 08-23-2007, 02:51 PM   #5
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Nope, no waterbath canning of green beans, and I DO NOT CARE if that is the way your granny always did it.

I am an extension specialist, and here is the site we refer to:

National Center for Home Food Preservation | How Do I? Can
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Old 08-23-2007, 05:26 PM   #6
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Thanks for the back-up, you all.

My friend's husband came by yesterday, and mentioned this, so tonight I'm going to give her a call. I don't want to make her mad or hurt her feelings, but I'd rather do that than see her get sick or even die.
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Old 08-24-2007, 12:05 PM   #7
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If she just canned them--I mean within the last day or two--she could open the jars and pour the beans into ziplocks and freeze them.
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Old 08-24-2007, 02:08 PM   #8
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That is not safe, she needs to freeze them. Tomatoes have to have citric acid added to can them and it is recommended that you leave them in a water bath for 1 1/2 hours, so I always pressure can them also. It still takes 45 minutes.
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