Food Safety Issues/olives


Hi Carol:
I bought a jar of green olives 2 weeks ago and when I opened them, they looked ok, smelled ok, and I ate 3. Then it dawned on me, that I did not hear a pop when I opened the lid. Am I in for a bout of food poisoning?

Hi Jill,

Some jars may not give the characteristic "pop" when they are opened but are still considered sealed.  

Fortunately, olives are an acidic food that does not support the growth of harmful bacteria so you will not be subject to food poisoning, even if the jar was not fully sealed.  Olives in brine juice are often stored at room temperature in olive stores and this is because they are not a potentially hazardous food capable of supporting the growth of harmful bacteria.


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Carol Schlitt


I can answer questions on home food safety, sanitation and home food preservation.


I am a former Extension educator, nutrition, wellness and food safety, having retired August 1, 2010. I am a food safety instructor for the Illinois Department of Public Health, a ServSafe Instructor/Proctor and have my own company, Safe & Savory Solutions, Inc -

National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (Past President and current Historian), St. Louis Culinary Society.

BS - University of Illinois MS - Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville

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