Food preservation:


Bacteriostatic


According to Websters, BACTERIOSTATIC means:

of or relating to or causing bacteriostasis,

which of course requires a definition of BACTERIOSTASIS, which means:

The inhibition of growth, but not the killing of, bacteria.

The main idea is that these methods attempt to slow the growth of bacteria, thus extend the "shelf life" of food.  The basic premise of these methods is to alter food or store it in a media that is inhospitable to bacteria.

The major forms are:
Drying
Freezing
Pickling
Salting/Curing
Smoking
Jamming/Jellying

In addition to a description of the methods, there are comments about which methods are good for third-world use and some extra useful links that didn't fit into the above catergories.
Useful field methods
Additional useful links


Drying:
To remove the moisture from; make dry: laundry dried by the sun.  Drying is fairly straight- forward (unlike bacteriostatic). Food is dried so that the moisture bacteria need to grow isn't present.  A great philosopher once said: "Drying is like love. Its intangible."

Foods that are typically dried include meats, fruits, vegetables, herbs, and grains.  Wow, that sounds like everything.  Drying can be pretty low tech (although there are complicated methods for drying, like freeze! drying), and can or cannot be energy intensive.  In warm sunny regions, drying can be fairly simple, as often foods need only be cut to appropriate proportions and placed in a sunny area. But in colder regions, drying food can require significant energy inputs.  It's usually important when drying foods that it be done quickly, so that the food doesn't have time to spoil.  This is probably the most common method of bacteriostatic food preservation in the world,and likely to be the dominant method in any one country, mostly because grains are aprimary staple, and drying is the primary method for storing grains.  (Think about all those grain silos everywhere).
 

Here are some useful links:

Some additional links:

A solar food dehydrator


Freezing:To preserve (foods, for example) by subjecting to freezing temperatures.

Freezing is also fairly straightforward. Almost anything can be frozen, although not indefinitely. The freezing process slows down the process of food degradation, but does not stop it. Some foods can be frozen longer than others. Freezing is a very practical and easy method, when there is access to a refrigerator. However, this is not a common commodity in third world countries. Freezing foods has very little practicality outside of most developed nations.

Here are some useful links:
 



Pickling:

To preserve or flavor (food) in a solution of brine or vinegar.

Ickle me, pickle me, tickle me too. Went for a ride in a flying shoe...wait. I'm off the subject again. Pickling is a fairly specific technique, is generally limited to veggies, and sometime fruits and vegetables. Pickled foods have a distinct taste, salty and sour, although a variety of herbs can be used to create a bright bouquet of salty and sour tastes. It is a fairly simple method, providing there is easy access to lots of salt and vinegar, typically key ingredients in this process. It also has a very low energy demand, no heat needed. It doesn't alter nutritional value any more than other methods, other than making it SUPER HIGH in sodium. This increase in sodium (salt) or acidity (vinegar) are not fun environments to live in, they suck the water right out of the bacterial cell (it's osmosis). To pickle or not to pickle is the question, but whatever you do, keep it kosher.
 



Salting/Curing:

To cure or preserve by treating with salt or a salt solution.
To preserve (meat, for example), as by salting, smoking, or aging.

Salt. The spice of life. Salting is essentially the same idea as pickling, but you don't need jars! However, salting and curing is generally related to meats than fruits and veggies (who wants a salty kiwi?). Salting and curing is a little more difficult in practice than pickling, but is still simple, effective, and efficient. Salted and cured foods are... you guessed it: salty. No need to ramble, all info above is applicable here.
 



Smoking:

To preserve (meat or fish) by exposure to the aromatic smoke of burning hardwood, usually after pickling in salt or brine.

You think smoking is cool, do ya? Well, you're wrong! Look how few sites i could find on smoking. See, no one does it. You don't either. Unless it's the right time and place. The right place would be somewhere that's NOT short on fuel wood.


Jamming/Jellying:

A soft, semisolid food substance with a resilient consistency, made by the setting of a liquid containing pectin or gelatin or by the addition of gelatin to a liquid, especially such a substance made of fruit juice containing pectin boiled with sugar.

A preserve made from whole fruit boiled to a pulp with sugar

Ever get the hankerin' for some toast and bacon jelly? No? Good. Making jelllies, jams, and preserves is a good, low energy method for preserving...FRUIT, you fruit. This is




Stuff that works well when you don't got no lectricity (e.g., third world apps):

    All of these methods, with the exception of freezing, are extremely applicable.
    Drying, pickling, salting/curing, smoking, and jamming and jellying are all low-
    energy methods of preserving food and can be done anywhere in the world.  Drying
    is probably the most feasible since it requires little attention and small storage space.
    Most people already dry much of their grain products.  As with canning, there will
    be an initial cost for supplies to perform the other methods.



Extras that didn't fit into the catergories above: