People are being warned to take extreme care with avocados after the FDA issued a safety warning over the much-loved fruit.
Studies by the FDA - The Food and Drug Administration - found record levels of bacteria such as salmonella and listeria on the skin of avocados when tested over the last 18 months, leading to worldwide warnings.
They’re now advising people to thoroughly wash the skin of your avocado before cutting into it and eating them. And while you might think you’re out of the woods as we only eat the flesh and discard the peel, the FDA suggest you should be at risk if the knife carries germs into the avocado.
To be completely safe, the health body advises that you run your avocados under running water and then scrub the skin with a clean brush before drying with some dry kitchen paper.
And while America is obviously a long way from Australia, health experts say it’s always good to wash fruit and veggies before eating them - including avocados, which many people may have ignored in the past.
"Since produce can pass through many hands and environments before it ends up in your shopping cart, exposure to germs is higher," says Lisa Yakas, microbiologist and senior project manager for health and safety organisation NSF International.