Can you eat jam with mold on top?

In this brief guide, we will discuss the following question, “can you eat jam with mold on top?”, and other queries related to this topic.

Can you eat jam with mold on top? 

Yes, you can eat jam with mold on top as long as you scrape the mold from the surface with a few centimeters beneath to make sure that all the spores are removed. However, doing that has several risks.

Moreover, not all the molds are dangerous because for example blue cheese and Roquefort are types of cheese that already have mold and those molds give these cheeses their unique taste and smell. Hence, avoid any food that has developed any sign of mold and spoilage.

Mold development is a sign of food spoilage and the growth of bacteria inside the food. These bacteria might be harmful through the secretion of their toxins. Generally, white or green fuzzy organisms will appear on the top of the product.

However, it is not always the case, sometimes the food can be spoiled without developing any sign of mold. Additionally, specialists and microbiologists advise people to discard their products once they develop mold because some bacteria secrete mycotoxins. 

Mycotoxins are very dangerous and harmful to human health and the body. These toxins have acute and chronic effects on the body and there are several symptoms: liver cancer, immunity alteration, protein metabolism alterations, convulsion, gangrene, and respiratory problems.

Why should I discard my canned food if mold forms?

Many specialists and microbiologists suggest discarding moldy jams and canned foods. There are many reasons why to throw them away. One of the reasons is the toxins secreted and present in the product. Sometimes, these toxins might be seen and sometimes they are not.

Some types of bacteria can develop inside the food without resulting in seen spoilage signs, and one of the most dangerous toxins is mycotoxins. Mycotoxins will develop inside the whole food and will secrete toxins and the most harmful type of mycotoxins is the aflatoxin.

High and regular exposure to aflatoxin will increase your risk of developing liver cancer. Moreover, aflatoxins are not only found in moldy jam and canned food but they are found in corn or maize, peanuts, and tree nuts. 

Also, meat and dairy products can be contaminated by aflatoxins through the animal’s consumption of contaminated feed. Additionally, toxins secretion leads to a change and an alteration in the pH of the product which increases the risk of botulism.

Botulism is a very serious illness that leads to muscle paralysis, breathing problems, and sometimes death because it affects the nervous system. Also, the most serious problem with this toxin is that the bacteria that produce it can make spores, which enhances its survival.

Moreover, mold can develop at low temperatures like in the refrigerator while some of them prefer warm temperatures. Additionally, bacteria and mold can develop in salty food like sausages, bacon, and salami and sugary food like jams and jellies.

What causes mold to form on jam?

Generally, mold can not grow easily on jam because jam is made from acidic fruits and due to their high concentration of sugar within the jams and jellies. However, mold can develop in several cases. 

First of all, if the jam is underprocessed, it will go bad and develop mold easily. Usually, the fruit should be boiled for a specific time to allow the pectin to form a gel and to kill the bacteria already present in the fruit. So, if it is not boiled for a specific time the jam will go bad easily.

Moreover, if you add your prepared jam to an unclean and unsterilized jar, bacteria can contaminate your product and develop easily. Also, if the lid or the cap of your jar can not be closed tightly, moisture can increase the risk of developing mold on your jam’s surface.

Furthermore, lack of refrigeration can lead to mold development, however, some bacteria can proliferate at refrigerator temperature and secrete toxins and lead to food spoilage and poisoning. 

Finally, once you open your jam or jelly jar and you are preparing your sandwich do not put the unclean spoon or spoon in the jar. So, use different utensils to dip in your jam, butter, or peanut butter, also avoid breadcrumbs from dropping in the jam.

How to prevent mold from forming on the jam?

To prevent mold from developing and forming on the jam, first, make sure you are cooking it at the right time and at the right temperature, to allow the pectin to form a gel. Additionally, make sure to put the right amount of sugar and follow your recipe.

Besides, when finishing, put your jam in a clean jar, and make sure its cap is closing firmly to avoid moisture and bacterial proliferation on the surface of your jam. Also, avoid double-dipping, that means using different utensils to scoop from your jam, the butter, and the peanut butter.

Moreover, if you did a small batch of jam, let it cool down completely at room temperature. Hence, do not let it sit outside for more than two hours.


In this brief guide, we will discuss the following question, “can you eat jam with mold on top?”, and other queries related to this topic.