Health warning against viral TikTok avocado hack: 'Violently ill'

Avocado lovers are being warned against a viral TikTok hack that sees the popular fruit stored in water to help them last longer in the fridge.

Despite claims the hack really does work in keeping the fruit a perfect shade of green and avoiding the dreaded brown mush, health officials say it could pose a risk to your health by breeding salmonella.

The trend started on TikTok with one user named ShamaMama Healing dubbing the method "magic". The video racked up over six million views with dozens trying the avocado hack.

TkTok video showing avocado fridge hack
The avocado method went viral on TikTok with people swearing the hack really works. Source: TikTok

In the video, the mum fills a bottle with water and pops in four whole avocados. Two weeks later she cuts one open to reveal the fresh and ripe fruit.

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the main concern with this method is that keeping the fruit submerged in water can multiply any harmful bacteria that may reside on the avocado's surface, the group told Newsweek.

"In addition, research performed by FDA scientists has shown that Listeria monocytogenes has the potential to infiltrate and internalize into the pulp of avocados when submerged in refrigerated dump tanks within 15 days during refrigerated storage. In this case, even surface disinfecting the avocado skin prior to slicing would not be able to remove the contamination," the FDA said.

'Consumers are at risk of illness'

Edward McCartney from Food Safety Plus in Australia agreed with the health advice given by the FDA and told Yahoo News Australia that "consumers are at risk of illness".

"Storing avocados in water allows any pathogens on the surface of the fruit to grow and multiply," he said.

"Such bacteria include listeria which is known to be present on the surface of fruits. Listeria also grows well even when refrigerated."

If pathogens are present in large numbers, Mr McCartney said "they may contaminate the avocado flesh when a knife cuts through the skin" and this is how consumers can fall ill.

A pile of avocados
Despite many swearing by the submerging method, health officials say it can make consumers very sick. Source: Getty

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