How Much Do Expiry Dates On Packaged Goods Matter?

How Much Do Expiry Dates On Packaged Goods Matter?

Although almost everybody throws out their food once its “sell by” or expiration date arrives, not all of that food is actually bad. Those dates are just guidelines set to help give you an idea of when to use foods—not toss them away.

But more interesting is the story about how these expiry dates came into being!

In the early 1930s, famed gangster Al Capone began “regulating” freshness dates after a family member got ill from some expired milk. Capone acquired a milk company named Meadowmoor Dairies and lobbied the Chicago City Council to pass a law that required an expiration stamp on milk.

Despite Capone’s efforts, it wasn’t until 40 years later, in the 1970s, that food labeling became law.

Today you see a lot of dates in packages you buy – Packed Date, Use By, Best Used by etc.

But not one of these have anything to do with the safety and freshness of your food, it merely indicates how long your food manufacturer thinks the food will retain its fresh taste.

Source: The Truth About ‘Expiration’ Dates


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