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Traditional Food Preservation in Coos County

By: Edward Chesky

For hundreds of years traditional food preservation techniques have been used to preserve food. Rural America by culture and tradition has been at the forefront of the traditional food preservation movement in the United States. With a long history of working the soil and land rural America produces and preserves much of what it eats. Tight family budgets among those living in rural America encourage the planting of kitchen gardens.

Traditional methods of preserving food include canning, pickling, drying, bottling and freezing. All of these techniques are used by the members of the Coos County Small and Beginner Farmers membership to preserve food and products that they produce for use during the winter. Coos County is the poorest county in New Hampshire and many people grow and acquire food to tide them over during the winter. Much of this food is preserved using traditional methods.

The Coos County Chapter of Small and Beginner Farmers has equipment for the preservation of food that it rents out to its membership. This equipment includes a freeze dryer, and soon to be acquired food dehydrator. The chapter also supports the preservation of food through the sharing of information between members and the hosting of educational classes. After the first of the year the chapter will be hosting a ZOOM conference on traditional food preservation with the University of New Hampshire.

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