Proper home canning practices include: carefully selecting and washing fresh food, preparing foods, adding acids (lemon juice or vinegar) to some foods, using acceptable jars and self-sealing lids, and finally processing jars in a boiling-water or pressure canner for the correct period of time. Collectively, these practices remove oxygen; destroy enzymes; prevent the growth of undesirable bacteria, yeasts, and molds; and help form a good vacuum in jars.
U.S.U. Resources - A complete listing of all food preservation publications is found here.
NCHFP Resources - General Info., Canning Fruits, Canning Tomatoes, Canning Salsa, Canning Nuts, Canning Vegetables, and Preparing and Canning Poultry, Red Meats and Seafoods.