As preppers we commonly stockpile foods for later consumption during an emergency situation. Consuming food that may be close to the expiration date on the food item. Well, those foods can be and most of the time is good way beyond the dates listed on the can or bottle.
I have discovered that expiration dates on food is completely voluntary and not required by the FDA. The exception being baby formula. I have a feeling they voluntarily put this information on there goods hoping people will toss outdated food and purchase more, therefore increasing profits.
So what do all of those “Best Before Date”, Use By Date etc. really mean? I found this article on the eatbydate.com website and new you all could use this information.
Best Before Date – The “Best Before Date” is, according to the manufacturer, the last date by which a products flavor or quality is best, the optimal time of its shelf life for quality. As noted above, the product may still be enjoyed after the “best before date.” Additionally the manufacturer may call this the “Best if Used By” date or the “Best By” date, which indicates that the quality of food might diminish after that date, but it is still good to eat and the shelf life is still active.
- Use By Date – The “Use By Date” is the last day that the manufacturer vouches for the product’s quality. The use by date is the date the manufacturers recommend to use the product for “peak quality” in the food. So you may eat the food after the use by date, but it likely is not going to be at peak quality.
- Sell By Date – The “Sell By Date” on a product is the items expiration date, the end of its shelf life at the store. This is the last date stores are supposed to display the product for sale, after the Sell By Date the stores should remove the product, the Shelf Life has expired. Although the food product may be used and enjoyed past this date, it is not recommended to purchase a product if the Sell By date has past.
Shelf Life – The “Shelf Life” of food is used in reference to these common codes (Use by Date, Sell by Date, and Best Before Date). The Shelf Life depends on which code is used and the type of product in question. Please see the specific page for your product to determine the proper shelf life of food because the Shelf Life is different for each particular item!
You can get more information on expiration dates and what they mean by going to the read more link above. So don't throw those goods away. Consume them if you must first, but consume them don't toss them because of the great expiration date myth.
Remember, Keep Preppin!