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I just bought a loaf of sliced bread from the corner store (couldn't make a trip to the grocery store today) and when I opened the bag, there were two tiny flies in it, still alive.

The flies have since been shooed away, but this raises some concerns - does this indicate that my bread has most likely gone bad, and that I should throw it away? Or could it still be usable?

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    You had insects inside a sealed container of corner store bread and you're still considering eating it? If you're that strapped just take it back. – Zackkenyon Jul 6 '16 at 15:19
  • @Zackkenyon We're probably going to throw it away - but I thought I might be missing some common phenomena with bread that just naturally happens...more than likely it's already in the trash. – Zibbobz Jul 6 '16 at 15:23
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    Was it indeed a sealed bag, or the type with ventilation holes? – rackandboneman Jul 8 '16 at 14:56
  • @rackandboneman No holes, just a twist-tied plastic bread bag – Zibbobz Jul 8 '16 at 15:22
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    @Zibbobz : even if the flies left, it's possible that they laid eggs on the bread ... which isn't necessarily bad to eat (your body will deal with it), but could mean a whole lot of flies in your near future if you haven't disposed of it by the time they hatch. – Joe Jul 8 '16 at 15:35
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Sometimes the presence of insects in certain foods cannot be avoided. The FDA has regulations on this, but I couldn't find any specific references to bread per se. However, based on standards for some other foods in there, two flies probably aren't a big issue.

At the same time, flies are well known for spreading bacteria harmful to humans all over the place, and if you're feeling squeamish about this, I would just throw out the bread. This may be true especially considering that you don't know how long the flies have been present with the bread, and that the bread has been sliced and thus exposes more surface area.

  • "Sometimes the presence of insects in certain foods cannot be avoided." ... The original question seems to be about live flies in the packaging? – rackandboneman Jul 8 '16 at 14:58
  • @rackandboneman Yes, living flies. – Zibbobz Jul 8 '16 at 15:22

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