Experts warn to not use low-acid vinegar for canning

They recommend the vinegar used to pickle vegetables should be at least 5% acidity

BLACKSBURG, Va. – Experts from Virginia Tech said any vinegar with less than 5% concentration could allow dangerous bacteria to grow and spoil the canned vegetables.

Professionals said it does not matter which vinegar you use, as long as it has 5% acidity.

Lester Shonberger, associate extension specialist at Virginia Tech, said it’s important to use the accurate amount and concentration when preserving food items.

“The recipes are designed to use a specific amount of vinegar at a specific concentration,” said Shonberger. “So, if you say have 4% vinegar in your pantry and you want to use it for your canning, my recommendation would be to not use that and use some other use for it because you won’t know the specific concentration and quantity.”

Shonberger said if you have any questions on the preservation process, you can visit your local food cooperative extension’s website to learn more.

About the Author:

Thomas grew up right here in Roanoke and is a graduate of Salem High School and Virginia Tech.