Green and black olives against a white background
Food - Drink
Are Olives With A White Film Safe To Eat?
Nothing tastes quite like a delicious, well-seasoned olive straight from the jar, but if you notice a white film has formed over your store-bought olives, you may wonder if they've gone bad. Before you dispose of them, rest assured that there is nothing wrong with your olives, and this white film is actually beneficial.
Contact with air can cause the vinegar in olive brine to oxidize, which then causes the olives' natural lactic yeast to form a film. This white film is lactobacillus probiotic bacteria, a type of good bacteria naturally found in your gut that is also present in brined olives due to the fermentation process of preserving them.
Probiotics can help with symptoms of lactose tolerance, aid digestion, enhance the immune system, treat high cholesterol, and reduce eczema. You would have to eat a whole lot of olives to get probiotic benefits akin to supplements, but it's nice to know that the white film won't hurt you and could improve your health just a bit.