Master Food Preserver Program
Black Friday, Cyber Monday and . . . #Giving Tuesday
UC Cooperative Extension in San Mateo/San Francisco Counties has joined #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals to celebrate generosity worldwide. #Giving Tuesday is held annually on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Please kick off the holiday season by supporting the UC Master Food Preservers!
The UC Master Preserver (MFP) Program began in San Mateo/San Francisco Counties in 2014. In just 3 years our volunteers have interacted with over 5,000 individuals interested in learning how to safely preserve food at home. Through fairs and festivals, hands-on workshops and library talks, our small group of 28 volunteers teach water bath, steam and pressure canning, pickling and fermenting, dehydrating and freezing, smoking and sausage making, in addition to all kinds of jams and jellies.
MFP volunteers work with:
- Home gardeners interested in preserving their backyard harvest
- Food banks interested in helping their clients safely store and preserve fresh foods and prevent hunger
- 4-H youth learning the art and science of food preservation for the first time
- Experienced canners wanting to to bring their canning practices and favorite family recipes up to date
- Entrepreneurs wanting to start their own cottage foods business
- Individuals interested in the health benefits of fermented foods, low-sugar jams, and low-salt pickles.
To stay up-to-date with the most reliable information about food safety and food preservation practices, MFP volunteers undergo 50 hours of initial training and then an additional 12 hours/year of continuing education each year. The connection between our volunteers and UC researchers and scientists make this program a valuable resource to our community.
As this program grows in San Mateo/San Francisco counties, the volunteers are looking to expand their work with underserved communities as well as address the issue of food waste through preserving. Your donation can help make that happen.
A $50 gift will provide an award for a family entry in the San Mateo County Fair preserved foods category to encourage families to try food preservation at home.
A $100 gift will purchase a water bath canner and basic canning equipment for a local food pantry or resource center to allow their clients to preserve excess produce and avoid food waste.
A $300 gift will provide a scholarship for Master Food Preserver training to an individual who would like to become a volunteer.
To make a donation of any size, please follow this link: "Make a Gift" or use the “Make a Gift” button at the top of this page. Use the drop down menu at “Designation” to select this program.
Your employer may have a matching donation program. Find out at the bottom of the donation page by entering your company's name in the search box.
To let others know about what we do and how you are supporting UCCE, use social media to share your story, take an #UNselfiephoto (see below for download)
Download the #UNselfie posters below and share with us, your friends and your family what inspired you to donate. Remember to use the hashtags #GivingTuesday and #UNselfie! Social media is key to making sure the story of the UC Master Food Preserver Program grows and reaches new audiences.
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PRESERVE TODAY, RELISH TOMORROW!
UC Master Food Preservers are dedicated volunteers who are trained to assist the UC Cooperative Extension staff provide up-to-date, research based food safety and preservation information to the public.
What do MFP Volunteers do?
- Answer food preservation telephone and email inquiries.
- Work in the community as local food preservation specialists.
- Staff information booths and present food preservation demonstrations at the county fair and other local events.
- Write articles for local newspapers and the MFP eNewsletter or blog.
- Teach classes on various food preservation topics.
Follow us on Facebook too! MFP Facebook