Venison & Other Wild Game

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) of deer and elk has been detected in parts of the United States. Conversion of human prion protein by CWD-associated prions has been demonstrated in an in-vitro cell-free experiment; but limited investigations have not identified strong evidence for CWD transmission to humans. More epidemiological and laboratory studies are needed to monitor the possibility of such transmissions.  Chronic Wasting Disease & Potential Transmission to Humans


Sulfur compounds in meat often cause metal lids (or cans) to darken. This discoloration does not affect meat safety. If you pressure can young poultry with bones in, tissue near the bones may darken on canning. This discoloration is due to blood cells leaching from the bones on heating and reacting with the muscle tissue. This discoloration is not harmful.

For canning wild game use only high quality, properly cleaned and cooled healthy wild game for canning. To ensure safety, process jars for the full time in a pressure canner to kill all bacteria that cause spoilage or food poisoning.

Large game animals are canned like beef, and small game animals and birds are canned like poultry. Follow directions for type of pack and preparation. For hot pack, wild game will benefit from tomato broth.

Large game animals – choose fresh, high quality chilled meat from healthy animals. Remove fat. Soak strong-flavored wild meats for 1 hour in brine containing 1 tablespoon salt per quart of cold water. Rinse. Remove large bones and prepare as directed for canning. Note: Because of concerns related to Chronic Wasting Disease, it is not recommended at this time to can bone-in venison or to make broth or stock from deer bones.

Small game animals and birds – choose freshly killed and dressed healthy animals or birds. Remove fat. Soak meat 1 hour in brine containing 1 tablespoon salt per quart of cold water. Rinse. Prepare as directed for canning, with or without bones.

For more information refer to:

If you have any questions regarding Family Living in Shawano County, please contact:


Terri Brunner Shawano County 4-H and Extension Coordinator 311  N Main Street, Room 109 Shawano, WI 54166 Main Line 715-526-6136 Fax: 715-526-4875 Email:


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