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White Peaches: pH and Home Canning

White Peaches: pH and Home Canning

Many universities refer to white peaches as being higher pH than yellow peaches, but none of them present any actual hard data, research or the actual number.  They just say "recent research says white peaches are above 4.6".

Here's what the National Center for Home Food Preservation at U.Ga. says:

"CAUTION:  Do not use this process to can white-flesh peaches.  There is evidence that some varieties of white-flesh peaches are higher in pH (i.e., lower in acid) than traditional yellow varieties. The natural pH of some white peaches can exceed 4.6, making them a low-acid food for canning purposes. At this time there is no low-acid pressure process available for white-flesh peaches nor a researched acidification procedure for safe boiling water canning. Freezing is the recommended method of preserving white-flesh peaches.
Consumers wishing to preserve peaches or nectarines are encouraged to preserve only the yellow-fleshed varieties until research-tested methods can be developed for canning peaches, peach topping, peach pie filling, classic peach jam, peach ginger jam (yum!), peach puree, dried peaches, or peach apple salsa (delicious!).

When canning peaches - all peaches, white or yellow,  I add either “Fruit Fresh” which is citric acid and Vitamin C, or more often, I use 1/4 cup of lemon juice (which is a small amount that does not alter the flavor – but does improve the safety as well as appearance), just like the Ball Blue Book recommends! See step 8 here: Canning Peaches  That has always worked fine for me!


The Ball Blue Book does not differentiate between white or yellow peaches.


So, there you have it: one authority, NCHFP, says they have no test data for it, and therefore they do not recommend it, or you add an acidifier and go with the empirical experience .It's your choice to make, I'm not opposing the NCHFP's wisdom, just saying, the absence of data does not mean it is unsafe, especially when the difference in pH is slight (as it is with some tomato varieties) and we add an acidifier.


Related Peach Information: Freezing, Making Jam, Jelly, Canning, Peach Pies, Recipes and More

Also, see our pages on easy illustrated peach directions:


For other fruit and vegetable festivals, see this page!


It appears as though there is only ONE sources for this caution (NCHFP), the others are just repeating it verbatim. NCHFP is a reputable source, but any time you can only find ONE source for ANY information, caution is prudent in accepting it as truth until it is independently verified.

  1. Canning White Peaches, National Center for Home Food Preservation at the University of Georgia
  2. University of Wisconsin Extension - Caution against canning white-fleshed peaches and nectarines
  3. Penn State Extension - Preserving White Peaches - "White-fleshed peaches have a natural pH above 4.6, which makes them a low-acid food; therefore, water bath or atmospheric steam canning will not destroy harmful bacteria in white peaches. Also, at this time there is no low-acid pressure canning process available for white-flesh peaches nor a researched acidification procedure for safe boiling water canning of white peaches.  Freezing is the recommended method of preservation for white peaches."