Food Poisoning from utinsils in the fridge??

I know a girl who got extremely mad when one of her roommates placed the leftovers from a pie in the fridge along with the knife they had been using to cut the pie. She swore that if anyone ate any of the leftovers, they would get food poisoning caused by leaving the knife in there. :dubious: The next day, I told my co-workers this story and some of them agreed with the girl.

This sounds insane to me. What? Refrigerated metal poisons food!? I have tried to find information about this on-line but I cant find anything credible. Does anyone know if there is anything to this claim?

No answer here, but I can tell you that I’ve left many spoons and other utensils in the fridge in the food and I’m still alive.

This is one of those types of things that (IMO) if it was factual, it be common knowledge by now.

I agree. I just want to find som facts to show these crazies.

How exactly do the allege the **utensil ** differs from the container?

Fruit pies are often acidic. If you leave a metal utensil in contact with them for a long time, you can get etching, and migration of metal ions into the food. This’ll impart an off-flavor and/or color to the food.
Nowadays most silverware is made from decently inert alloys, so etching isn’t much of a problem, but that wasn’t the case 30 or 40 years ago. Talk of ‘poisoning by silverware’ is likely a holdover from that distant era.

At one point in my travels, I was HACCP certified (professional cooking safety procedures). This is not a recognized principle. Indeed, in the professional context, a utensil that stays in one place is preferable, because it reduces the risk of cross-contamination. Look at the prepared food counter of, say, Whole Foods, and you’ll notice that each item has its own utensil. You may be certain that the health department can see those utensils and would howl if your friend’s belief were correct.

That said, what she might be transmitting - albeit imperfectly (think of the old party game “telephone”) - is the proposion that putting the utensil with which you were eating a dish in the fridge with the leftovers probably ain’t such a good idea. IMHO, the risk of such a practice is very small, but one can at least make an argument that there’s a risk.

I like Squink’s theory as well.

… If it were real whipped cream I’d be more worried about the possibility of ptomaine poisoning or something similar!
Bacterial infectious agents causing seve digestinve disturbances.

You can still see this if you leave an open can of tomatoes in the fridge, as the area around the food’s edge will become black (and so may the food there). Also, if you cover a tomato-laden dish with aluminum foil, the foil may get holes in it where it touches the food.