In recent years, a series of would-be warnings have circulated that claim that particular food or beverage products have been contaminated with HIV infected blood and that these products thereby pose a threat of HIV infection to those who consume them.
However, all of these supposed contamination warnings are false and they should not be taken seriously.
The US-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that it has never received any reports of HIV infections caused by contaminated food. The CDC also points out that a person would not become infected even if they did consume food¹ or drink that contained HIV infected blood:
In an article about HIV transmission, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes:
You can’t get HIV from consuming food handled by an HIV-infected person. Even if the food contained small amounts of HIV-infected blood or semen, exposure to the air, heat from cooking, and stomach acid would destroy the virus.
The CDC further explains:
HIV does not survive long outside the human body (such as on surfaces), and it cannot reproduce outside a human host.
Moreover, not one of these HIV food contamination messages has ever been confirmed or supported by any credible news outlets or public health warnings. Nor have any of the supposedly contaminated products ever been recalled. Of course, if a food or beverage product was found to be contaminated or unsafe it would quickly be recalled and existing stock would be removed from store shelves.
These nonsensical warnings perpetrate long-running myths about HIV and AIDS and are entirely counterproductive. They also unfairly malign the companies who produce and distribute the supposedly contaminated products. Sending on such false health warnings will help nobody and serve only to spread fear and alarm for no good reason.
If you receive one of these fake HIV food contamination messages, do not spread the hoax further by sharing it. And let the person who posted it know that the message is a hoax.
1: The CDC does point out that, if you ate food that a person with HIV had already chewed, then the virus might possibly be spread to you. The CDC notes:
Though it is very rare, HIV can be spread by eating food that has been pre-chewed by someone with HIV. The contamination occurs when infected blood from a caregiver’s mouth mixes with food while chewing. The only known cases are among infants.
But unless you are in the habit of getting someone to chew your chocolate, butter, or oranges for you before you eat them, then you are not at risk.
Importance NoticeAfter considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.
These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.
Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.
And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.
When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.
I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.
A Big Thank YouI would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.
I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.
Closing DateHoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.
Thank you, one and all!