Dates On Our Food- Do They Really Matter?

  • Finally there’s an explanation. Do you throw food out when it’s past the date on the label or wait until it smells bad. 

    A new Harvard study has the answer on what many of us have wondered. 

    The study wondered why use by dates cause a lot of people to trash perfectly good food. 

    So do food expiration dates really matter?

    Nearly half of the food supply in the U.S. is tossed out because of those dates.

    The Harvard study found 40 percent of the entire food supply in the U.S. is wasted because of these dates.

    Did you know, baby formula and some baby foods are really the only foods required by federal law to have set expiration dates. Dates on other food items are merely suggestions from the manufacturer.


    So do these dates really matter?  Here's what experts say they really mean:

    Use-by and best-buy dates indicate quality -- when the manufacturer thinks the food will reach its peak freshness, not when the food will spoil.

    The sell-by date is really only for stores, letting them know how long the item should sit on the shelf.  Usually, the food is still edible for some time after.


    So before you toss out that cheese, give it a chance.  It's probably still good.  When in doubt, give it to your husband.

    So the morale of the story here is you're probably not going to die if you eat something past the date on the label or wrapper.

    Food experts say instead of looking at the date, look at the food, smell it -- if it looks and smells rotten, then toss it out.  Don't just go by the date.

    SOURCE: Food expiration dates: Do they really matter?