Why You Should Skip Facebook's Latest Avocado Storage Hack

Avocados are one of the most finicky fruits out there in terms of ripeness. Sometimes it feels like they're either rock hard or totally brown and soft with no in-between. The window of ripeness can be so small that it's easy to miss entirely. Spoon University reports that avocados can go bad in as little as two days.

Some days, it seems like the internet is more than saturated with hacks and tips on how to ripen avocados or to accelerate or slow down the process, keeping the fruit in that coveted narrow zone of ripeness for as long as possible. When that window can feel about 45 minutes long sometimes, it's understandable why avocado lovers would want to jump on any new hack or trend. Popular methods to manipulate the avocado's lifespan include rubbing with lemon and freezing to preserve ripeness, baking to quicken the process, or storing with a sliced red onion to prevent browning once it's been cut (via Buzzfeed). There's a new hack going around Facebook that you may want to think twice about before trying out.

Storing in water could spread harmful bacteria

The newest entry into the litany of avocado ripeness hacks comes from Facebook. Today reports that the post suggests completely submerging the avocados in water and then storing them in the refrigerator, noting that some people claim it will prolong that sweet spot of ripeness for weeks. 

Today tested out this tip, but even though the submerged avocados looked perfectly ripe, a taste test couldn't be performed because of safety concerns. Unfortunately, this method disperses any surface bacteria contamination throughout all the water, which can get through the skin and into the avocado. The FDA tested the exterior of a sampling of avocados in 2014 and found that some in the sample were positive for Salmonella and Listeria. The government agency recommended properly washing the produce to avoid food poisoning.

This isn't the first time submerging in water has come up when it comes to avocado storage. As Business Insider reports, the method of submerging half an avocado in water to prevent browning on the cut edge has been a popular hack for a few years and seemingly originated on Tik Tok. But since the peel of the avocado is still intact, and the water is in contact with the interior, this method could also cause serious contamination if there are bacteria on the fruit.