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When is it safe to eat moldy food?

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NEW YORK -- Research from the Natural Resources Defense Council shows Americans are throwing out $165 billion worth of food every year.

You can’t always assume all the mold is gone just by getting rid of the problem zone. So if there is that little nasty spot on your soft cheese or bread, don’t even try to cut away the bad part, just throw away that entire loaf.

Just smell it

Mold has the capacity to contaminate an entire bag or Tupperware container.  If there’s even a hint of it on leftovers, or if it just smells or tastes just a little musty, toss it.

When can I eat moldy food?

If you have anything hard such as a pear, carrot, hard cheese or cured meat, you can cut around or save away the problem area.

But make sure you repackage the food once you’ve had your fill.  While the mold might not be able to penetrate harder foods as well, the particles swarming around in the old containers, or cling wrap , could start your problem all over again.

The Food and Drug Administration says some can cause allergic reactions, respiratory problems, and a few, usually found on nuts and grains, could produce “mycotoxins” that can make you sick.