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Q: Why aren’t home-canned white peaches or nectarines allowed as a cottage food product?

A: Home-canned white peaches and nectarines were added to the Minnesota cottage food list as 'not allowed' when the list was updated in June 2021. As we learn more about food products and evidence, they are high-risk food items or ones that do not meet the pH or water activity parameters they are added to the food list as not allowed. 

Recent research revealed varieties of white-flesh peaches and nectarines have a higher pH (lower in acid) than traditional yellow varieties. The natural pH of white peaches or nectarines can exceed 4.6, making them a low-acid food for canning purposes and a potentially hazardous food, therefore not allowed as a cottage food product. Additionally, there is no tested low-acid pressure canning processes available for white-flesh peaches or nectarines, nor a researched acidification procedure for safe boiling water canning. 

The good news is that yellow-flesh peaches or nectarines may be safely home-canned. They have a natural pH higher than 4.6, therefore an allowable cottage food product. For safety sake, always follow researched tested recipes and resources such as the canning of yellow peaches from the National Center for Home Food Preservation. 

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