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Greetings,

Two questions:

1 - I was told to be careful with beans. What is the danger of botulism and dry Pinto beans in pails or #10?

2 - Is it a good deal? At Kroger Chef Boyardee 15 oz Ravioli or Lasagna in cans for 1 for 1$?

Thank you
 

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Really?
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AFAIK, if a can is bloated, dont buy it. My wife won't buy it if it has rust on it. We get canned stuff for 50 cents at a scratch and dent. YMMV
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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Botulism has a few requirements before it can grow. It requires a moist, low acid environment with low oxygen. Dry beans are safe as are all dried foods. Canned foods, because of being moist and low oxygen could be ideal environments. That's why the foods are either acidified by adding citric acid, ascorbic acid (vitamin c) or some other food acid, or are canned at high enough heat (pressure canning for soups, meats, etc) that the botulism spores are killed.

Botulism produces pressure, so if a can is bulged, avoid it. Also, heat breaks down the botulism toxin. Cooking canned foods for 10-15 minutes would break down the toxins, but it's better to avoid any suspected foods and not take the risk.
 

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Botulism has a few requirements before it can grow. It requires a moist, low acid environment with low oxygen. Dry beans are safe as are all dried foods. Canned foods, because of being moist and low oxygen could be ideal environments. That's why the foods are either acidified by adding citric acid, ascorbic acid (vitamin c) or some other food acid, or are canned at high enough heat (pressure canning for soups, meats, etc) that the botulism spores are killed.

Botulism produces pressure, so if a can is bulged, avoid it. Also, heat breaks down the botulism toxin. Cooking canned foods for 10-15 minutes would break down the toxins, but it's better to avoid any suspected foods and not take the risk.

Are you sure that heat will denature botulism toxins? Any sources for that?
 

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I thought botulism is found only in cans that have been dented AND perforated. Or maybe that's another food poison bacteria I'm thinking of.

I buy dented cans all the time (mainly peaches), but not if it looks like they are leaking.
 

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Freedom Is Not Free
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Stay away from cans that are dented on or near a seam. This is the week spot on the can and can allow air in to start the growth. Swollewn cans are a sure sign of spoilage. If I open something and have any doubt it goes out. People die from botulisim every year. I would rather throw away a .50 can of chilli/beans whatever than take a dirt nap.
 

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The system I've seen in practice for a number of decades by groups that readily keep a year's food supply on hand is to rotate/use canned goods according to their canned age. Also, once every month, they will 'flip' each can/container so that the bottom is now that top. The reason is that the separation of contents allows gases to build that can promote spoilage. This is the only practical way you are going to achieve a potential self life of a year from canned goods, and maintain your best degree of safety. This is also assuming that the goods are being stored in a somewhat dark, cool location. Heat increases content spoilage and light affects the contents of more transparent containers.
Assign each section a month designation and some sort of number/letter designation to the top and bottom of each can, that way at a glance you should be able to tell which section is supposed to be used that month and if every section has had the cans 'flipped'. You should see all the same number/letter at a glance, i.e., '1' or 'T' for Top vs '2' or 'B' for Bottom.

Good eating.
 

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Greetings,

Two questions:

2 - Is it a good deal? At Kroger Chef Boyardee 15 oz Ravioli or Lasagna in cans for 1 for 1$?

Thank you
No. At my local WalMart they are normally priced $0.89 per can. Also, if you watch the paper, there are coupons for this all the time.
 

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About dented/leaking cans: if a dent doesn't cross a seam and doesn't impact can integrity, it's probably ok. If it is severe enough to deform a seam, forget it.
 

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2cd mouse gets the cheese
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If your concerned about the beans, lay them out in the sun before cooking "UV". Cooking heat will not kill botulism.
 

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Limpin to safety.
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I Guess its simple. When you can foods, if the sucked in lid, one day decides that it is not longer a vacuum and it releases itself, then you probably have a problem.


I have corn that did that. I threw it all out.

I am no expert on Canning, however, canned foods will not bubble, and will remain in a state of stasis as long as you did it right. The day you decide to use it, the lid should remain difficult to pop off. The vacuum is vital.

Adding Lemon Juice is an awesome way to up the Acid content. However I wouldn't with meats.
 
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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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Are you sure that heat will denature botulism toxins? Any sources for that?
The botulism spores are heat tolerant, that's why the higher heat of pressure canning is needed for low acid foods. But the toxin breaks down readily when heated to normal cooking temperatures. Here's a few links, google found many.

Journal of the American Medical Association:
http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/285/8/1059
The toxin is readily inactivated by heat (85°C for 5 minutes).

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/FS104
While the botulinum spores are heat stable, the toxin itself is heat-labile, so heating a food to 176°F for 10 minutes before consumption can greatly reduce the risk of illness.

http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=25769
The toxin is heat labile and can be destroyed if heated at 80°C for 10 minutes or longer.
 

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Nope, the bacteria is destroyed by heat but the toxins are not. Can't remember where I read it. But if it smells or tastes "twangy", spit it out immediately.
Poke around google a bit and you'll find out a lot about botulism. From reading this thread, it's apparent that a lot of folks aren't very knowledgeable about it, yet we all need to be. It's one of the most toxic substances known, yet easily avoided with a little knowledge and caution.
 

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The botulism spores are heat tolerant, that's why the higher heat of pressure canning is needed for low acid foods. But the toxin breaks down readily when heated to normal cooking temperatures. Here's a few links, google found many.

Journal of the American Medical Association:
http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/285/8/1059
The toxin is readily inactivated by heat (85°C for 5 minutes).

http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/FS104
While the botulinum spores are heat stable, the toxin itself is heat-labile, so heating a food to 176°F for 10 minutes before consumption can greatly reduce the risk of illness.

http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=25769
The toxin is heat labile and can be destroyed if heated at 80°C for 10 minutes or longer.
I know I've read from several sources that when opening home pressure canned foods that it is recommended to always simmer them for 10 - 15 minutes before consuming. Reading that never gave me supreme confidence in the home canning methods but I look at it as perhaps another layer of cya. I also believe that as others have posted most of the time the signs are evident whether a jar has been compromised. Be observant.

gk
 

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Super Moderator and Walking Methane Refinery
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I know I've read from several sources that when opening home pressure canned foods that it is recommended to always simmer them for 10 - 15 minutes before consuming. Reading that never gave me supreme confidence in the home canning methods but I look at it as perhaps another layer of cya. I also believe that as others have posted most of the time the signs are evident whether a jar has been compromised. Be observant.

gk
I see that recommendation a lot too. It's just an additional safety net and a good one in my opinion. The problem with recognizing a jar (or metal can) that has been compromised is that by the time you can see it, it's been compromised for some time. It's in the early stages, when you can't see it, that worries me. It's just as deadly, but no blown seal (or bulging can) yet.
 

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Today folks have gotten into the habit of eating a lot of casseroles.

It is my understanding that back in the day there was a lot more stews. A big stew pot or stock pot can boil meat for days without burning it.

Road-kill critters can easily go into a stock pot of boiling water, just boil the craziness out of it. After a few hours of boiling the meat will fall off the bone. You can fish out the bones and skin bits. Eventually most of the meat with dis-integrate into broth. Any cartilage can be removed with a ladle. The resulting stock can then have veggies, cereal grains, or potatoes added to it.

So it is with canned meats, a frying pan will burn them. If there is a question, then you need to heat it for a really long time, and the only way to do that without burning is to boil.
 

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Freezing Up North
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One thing to note: if stuff is on sale, there is a good chance it has a shorter expiry date. I'd rather pay $1.49 for a can of tuna that has a 2014 expiry date than $0.99 for a can that expires next year. I guess it depends on what your rotation is like.
 
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