A foil food container wrapped in foil containing a potato casserole molded in my fridge that caused a bad moldy food smell in the fridge that transferred and absorbed into the frozen foods in the attached freezer. Can the frozen food still be eaten and is there a method to neutralize the mold odor from the frozen raw meats that are in airtight heavy freezer plastics to still be cooked for consumption? Specifically raw frozen scallops, frozen raw chicken in ziplock freezer bags, ground beef and also some packaged items still unopened in their original packaging such as cooked frozen meatballs, cooked sausage dogs, fresh frozen ravioli and fresh frozen pastas.

1 Answer 1


Welcome to the site. I can't see how smells would be transferred from fridge to freezer as there isn't airflow between fridge and freezer - each side is separately cooled with its own sealed air recirculation. I suspect you have gotten that smell stuck in your brain, it's like when you can't get the stench of rotten milk out of your nose. A trick to get rid of that is to smell coffee grounds. It's also possible that your freezer is smelly for other reasons and you're just noticing that now due to the unfortunate situation with your casserole.

To address the smell issue, there's no food safety concerns with odors. The smells won't make you sick, although it could make some food unpalatable.

The best thing you can do is get rid of whatever is causing the smell and then thoroughly clean your fridge and freezer.

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    Some fridge-freezers do transfer cold air from the freezer to the fridge. The other way round wouldn't make any sense - it would warm the freezer - but the return air from the fridge then passes over the coils and back to the freezer. My old one did this. The fridge was on top of the freezer in that model.
    – Chris H
    Jun 8, 2022 at 14:23

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