Worms on my cashews!

jldx2in2000

Cathlete
A few months ago I bought some raw cashews and raw almonds from the bulk section of my natural foods store. I put them in airtight containers and have been snacking on them off and on. Well, the other night I put together some cashews and raisins for a snack and found a tiny little white worm crawling on one of the raisins. :confused:

I thought it came from the raisins so I threw the bag of raisins out. Then last night, I got home from work and decided to eat a few prunes and some cashews. Again, I found a tiny white worm in my bowl only this time it was on the cashews. I took out my container of cashews and sure enough there were several tiny worms crawling all over the remaining cashews. YUCK!!!

After throwing the cashews out, I then went to my almonds (of course inspecting each one thoroughly) and found a moth carcass stuck to one of them! What the heck!!!! Can't a girl eat some nuts without creepy crawlies on them?!? :mad:

So my first question is, has anyone else had this happen?

Should I be worried that I may have eaten some of the worms or bugs? (Maybe that is overreacting given people all over the world have less sanitary food than we do.)

Does anyone know whether these worms/bugs are because the nuts were raw or because they were in a bulk bin?

Maybe I should go back to buying dry roasted nuts in a sealed container?

Sorry if this grossed anyone out.
 

Dela

Cathlete
Well at least you know they are pretty darn natural ;).

Well, I don't know if it's ok to eat the little critters live, but I do know we eat dead critters all the time in processed foods too, there are government guidelines to acceptable amounts of bugs and stuff in food.

I guess it depends on what the little worms are if it's safe to eat, but personally, I would have to toss it, no way I could eat it after seeing that, yuck. I guess people do eat live bugs and other assorted items all the time on shows like fear factor.
 

elsie3

Cathlete
Sorry Julie--yuck. A "few months" is a long time to store nuts at room temperature. Cashews are highly perishable because of their high oil content and won't keep long at room temperature, even in an airtight container. I keep my nuts in the freezer until I use them, but I just learned that the refrigerator would be better to preserve the vitamin E content.

I always buy raw nuts and have never had a problem--even with bulk stuff. I have found that some bulk is very inferior in quality, though, so you do have to be careful. I would think you have every right to complain to the store about the "moth carcass."

I wouldn't feel the need to switch back to roasted nuts, just be careful what you buy and how you store it.

As for the possibility of ingestion:eek:, I wouldn't worry about it. I'm certainly not a health expert, but I would think that stomach acid would be more than enough to take care of any extra little wriggly protein.;) Those type of bugs aren't like parasites or anything.
 

bonvivant

Cathlete
It sounds like pantry moths. I don't know where you got them, but you should make sure you don't have an infestation in your house. Grains/flours and pet food are a good place to start. It's possible they came in with the nuts. Check your other dry goods in case they've gotten into it. Clean the area you stored the nuts and anything else you got from that store. Put the trash outside as soon as you're done. Hope you get this taken care of because untreated it can become worse.
 

jldx2in2000

Cathlete
It sounds like pantry moths. I don't know where you got them, but you should make sure you don't have an infestation in your house. Grains/flours and pet food are a good place to start. It's possible they came in with the nuts. Check your other dry goods in case they've gotten into it. Clean the area you stored the nuts and anything else you got from that store. Put the trash outside as soon as you're done. Hope you get this taken care of because untreated it can become worse.

Oh my gosh!!! I think that is what they are! I just read this article and the pictures of the worms and cocoons are what I was seeing! The moth carcass was actually a cocoon I think.

I feel disgusting and physically ill now and can't wait to get home from work to completely purge my pantry.

From now on I am keeping everything in the fridge or freezer. I already keep flour, oats, wheat germ in there but now I apparently will have to make room for cereals, nuts, and dried fruits too!
 

tralaiven

Cathlete
eww...this is nasty...generally I freeze all the nuts I buy...for one thing...I like them better cold and also they seem to stay fresher longer. I am going to put my whole wheat flour in there now too!
 

Ly10up

Cathlete
Yuck

It's happened to me as well. Could possibly one the grossest things you could even make up, but I've never heard of death by pantry moth larve, so I think we're safe. :p Purge your pantry and all will be good. I'll start keeping my nuts from bulk in the freezer as weel. Appreciate the tip, Elsie.
 

JeanneMarie

Cathlete
Yup... that's what I thought when I read the OP's first post. Pantry moths. I've had them too. Nothing else but a complete purge will work.

ICK!!!!!
 

jonahnah

Cathlete
Pantry Pest thingies actually work very well for getting rid of the moths. They are little cardboard triangle 'tents' w/ sticky film inside. The moths get stuck there & die. I buy them at the hardware store. They work for months.

Re: the worms - they come in packaged cereal, flour bags, rice bags, dried pasta etc. etc. It's not just bulk foods. They LOVE nuts though. Bottles of oil seem to attract them too.
 

kathryn

Cathlete
Knoxville's post reminded me:
If I store nuts, seeds or grains out of the fridge for any period of time, I store them in Mason jars, sealed with a "Pump-n-Seal" (I LOVE this little thing! So simple to use. It takes all the oxygen out of the jars, and keeps stuff so fresh!): </title> <link type="text/css" rel="stylesheet" href="" /> </head> <body> <title> (down a ways on the page).

ETA: for some reason, the link comes out looking weird, but it works!


I've encountered those little white worms in food before, and it's turned me off the food for quite a while: once I was eating Hazelnuts from a French market, and happened to look at one of the halves, only to see a worm curled up in it. (Beurk!).

Another time, I was eating wild raspberries (yummy!) on a walk in the woods, again happened to look at the stem-end of one, ony to see another worm curled up in it. (Beurk à la puissance treize!).

Who knows how many of each of those I'd already eaten that had worms in, before I noticed! (Definitely blew my veggie diet!)
 
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MissL

Cathlete
I had a big problem with those pantry moths many years ago. I think they came in in a package of wild rice. Had to throw out everything in my pantry and start over. Now, when I buy grains, flour, seeds, nuts, protein powder, trail mix--anything that might possibly become infested with pantry pests, I put them in sealed glass jars. I buy the jars with a rubber seal on a lid that clamps down on the side. I have many, many of these jars in three different sizes. When I put something in the jar, I note the expiration date of the product and place a sticker on the jar with that info on it. That way, if there are any pantry pests, they will be confined to the one jar. Also, if pantry pests do get loose somehow, the products in the sealed jars are protected and don't have to be pitched. And, because the jars I use are see-through glass, I can turn the jar sideways and visually check the product for anything moving and/or anything that shouldn't be in there before I use it.
 

hokypoky

Cathlete
I had this same problem last year. I think they came in with the dog treats, although I kept them in a rubbermaid bin. These things give me the heebie-bajeebies!!!! Not only did I put all cereal, rice, etc. in airtight containers, but I sprayed and wiped the whole dang pantry down with vinegar. It's the only way to get in the cracks and kill the ones you can't see. They would also "cocoon" inside cardboard boxes. Ugh. Every time I found one I'd be so creeped out.

After the vinegar wipedown (and tossing hundreds of $$ of food) I didn't see any for over a year. Then I found one a few weeks ago but I think it was an isolated incident because I haven't seen any since. I did use those traps and they caught a few, but I could usually see them to catch them myself. So sorry you have to go through this! It's awful!
 

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