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How to tell if carrots have gone bad

Carrots are root vegetables that are generally orange in colour. Purple, red, yellow and white varieties also exist. Fresh carrots have a crisp texture and a fresh, earth-like scent. Carrots are best stored in the vegetable crisper drawer. The vegetables need to be inspected regularly to ensure that they have not spoiled. Spoiled carrots often lack in flavour and texture, and they can cause food-borne illness.

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  1. Look at the date printed on the package. If you purchase carrots from the store, use them before the date listed for best results. While the date listed is a recommended sell-by date, it will help you to determine if the carrots still are viable. You cannot always tell if vegetables are spoiled simply by smelling or looking at them.

  2. Examine the carrots carefully to look for spots of mould or mildew. The mould will appear as an odd discolouration on the carrots, such as a green or white area. Discard the carrots if you notice mould or mildew.

  3. Inspect the texture of the carrots. If the carrots appear limp or have soft spots, the produce has deteriorated in quality. While the carrots might not have spoiled, they need to be discarded to prevent the risk of food-borne-illness.

  4. Smell the carrots carefully. Spoiled carrots will have an odd or foul odour due to harmful bacteria growing on the produce. Discard the spoiled carrots immediately.

  5. Tip

    Carrots have storage life of two weeks in the refrigerator.


    Always wash carrots before you prepare them to remove any dirt or debris. Avoid washing vegetables before you store them because it can cause them to deteriorate more quickly.

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About the Author

Angela LaFollette holds a Bachelor of Arts in advertising with a minor in political science from Marshall University. LaFollette found her passion for writing during an internship as a reporter for "The West Virginia Standard" in 2007. She has more than six years of writing experience and specializes in topics in garden and pets.

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