Published: Thu, August 10, 2017
Medical | By Rita Mcdonald

Can Drinking Moscow Mules From Copper Mugs Cause Food Poisoning?

Can Drinking Moscow Mules From Copper Mugs Cause Food Poisoning?

Iowa's health advisory warns that a Moscow Mule drink served in a copper mug could turn acidic enough for it to become a hazard to the person who consumes the drink.

The Alcoholic Beverages Division reminds businesses they can not serve Moscow Mules in mugs with a copper interior.

"Mugs that have a copper interior may not be used with this beverage".

Folks might not think about the pH level of their Moscow Mule or other beverages when serving drinks in fancy copper cups, but since the Moscow Mule has a pH level well below 6.0, the copper mug should be avoided.

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Health officials said establishments in Iowa can no longer use the signature copper mug to serve the cocktail unless they are lined with another material.

The pH of a traditional Moscow Mule is well below 6.0.

Copper is commonly used for kitchenware like pots and pans, but it can be unsafe. National Library of Medicine, consuming large amounts of copper can cause abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting and yellow skin (jaundice). Foods that are acidic (pH lower than 6.0) can corrode the copper and cause the metal alloys to mix in the food or liquids.

Not all copper mugs, however, are poisonous.

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Over time, Business Insider says that copper exposure can damage the liver and kidneys.

The health warning does note that copper mugs that have an inner lining using a different metal like nickel or stainless steel are safe to drink from.

"You're at more risk for alcohol consumption", Marler said.

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