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(Mother Nature Network)   There would be a lot less wasted food in this world if we didn't have all those pesky 'use by' dates   (mnn.com) divider line 136
    More: Obvious, sell-by dates, Food Marketing Institute  
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4978 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Sep 2013 at 2:33 PM (42 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-09-19 02:35:40 PM
Yeah, and don't get me started on that 'Age of Consent' bullshiat.
 
2013-09-19 02:38:13 PM
I smelled it, you smelled it. What's it supposed to smell like? I never smelled milk.
 
2013-09-19 02:38:20 PM
I think a bigger problem is quality consistency and storage/processing.

I've had products that when opened are obviously bad but well before the sell by date.  Not many, but some.


Use your nose and eyes like others in the comments said.
 
2013-09-19 02:38:42 PM
I agree with these guys FTFA:
Screw those dates. Arbitrary. Empower yourself and use your senses. Does it look smell or taste gross? No, then eat it!'Use by' is a guideline. Scratch 'n sniff is more effective.  Even more so with pharmaceuticals (within reason).
 
2013-09-19 02:39:58 PM
What's the percentage of "poors" with refrigerators? I'm sure that effects these dates.
 
2013-09-19 02:40:05 PM
Um.  Yeah so call me crazy but I love leftovers so I very rarely throw out those.  I eat a lot of fresh stuff so I do wind up throwing out the occasional veggies that I didn't eat in time but those go on the compost pile so no real loss there.  About once or twice a year I toss some yogurt or other container food I didn't eat before it went south.  So I guess eat more fresh food and it's less of a problem?  Also, milk and eggs don't need expiration anyway.  Milk gets the smell and taste test and eggs get the float test (if they float in cold water they be bad matey).
 
2013-09-19 02:40:22 PM
images3.wikia.nocookie.net

It's more of a guidline than a rule.

/oblig pirate day reference fulfilled.
 
2013-09-19 02:40:24 PM
If it weren't for "sell by" dates, food pantries would have 85% less food.
 
2013-09-19 02:40:25 PM

TheAnusThatAteManhattan: I think a bigger problem is quality consistency and storage/processing.

I've had products that when opened are obviously bad but well before the sell by date.  Not many, but some.


Use your nose and eyes like others in the comments said.


I know someone that worked at a Real Canadian Stupidstore. They would regularly leave milk and eggs unrefrigerated for days at a time.
 
2013-09-19 02:42:20 PM
Anything before the date is good 99.999% of the time (packaging errors/damaged packaging might still cause it to spoil). After the date? Don't be a pussy. Your ancestors imported spices to deal with the less-than-fresh taste of foods that were just over the peak. Learn from the past.
 
2013-09-19 02:42:21 PM

Bareefer Obonghit: Yeah, and don't get me started on that 'Age of Consent' bullshiat.


Bullshiat?

I think it is New Order's finest song (after Ceremony).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VcGJZpfl1c
 
2013-09-19 02:43:41 PM
OK, so let's swap from pasteurization to irradiation treatments (x-ray exposure) as the standard sterilization.  That'll, what, triple the expiration dates on food so we can ship it everywhere?

Oh, wait, farking anti-nuclear conspiracy theorist morons like the people running MNN have shat on anything with the word 'radiation' in it so that we can't have nice things.  How unfortunate.
 
2013-09-19 02:44:11 PM

DerAppie: Anything before the date is good 99.999% of the time (packaging errors/damaged packaging might still cause it to spoil). After the date? Don't be a pussy. Your ancestors imported spices to deal with the less-than-fresh taste of foods that were just over the peak. Learn from the past.


They also died of dysentery on the Oregon trail.
 
2013-09-19 02:44:36 PM
How else am I supposed to know when my bleu cheese goes bad?
 
2013-09-19 02:45:21 PM
What some people need to realize:
There's a difference between "safe to eat by" and "best taste/freshness by."  Manufactures need to be clear if the date in question is a matter of safety or perceived quality.
 
2013-09-19 02:45:54 PM
I think those dates are more as a tool so they don't get sued.  They also mean, if it's one day past the expiration date, it doesn't necessarily mean the food is outright bad, it just means quality goes down.
/we've come along way hot coffee lady in the mcdonalds drive thru
 
2013-09-19 02:47:11 PM

Jim_Callahan: OK, so let's swap from pasteurization to irradiation treatments (x-ray exposure) as the standard sterilization.  That'll, what, triple the expiration dates on food so we can ship it everywhere?

Oh, wait, farking anti-nuclear conspiracy theorist morons like the people running MNN have shat on anything with the word 'radiation' in it so that we can't have nice things.  How unfortunate.


I think most food irradiation is done with gamma sources (not that there's a physical difference from x-rays). I've had nutters explain to me that microwave ovens leave radiation in food so unless you change the education system in the US you'll never get the people to understand it.
 
2013-09-19 02:50:06 PM

Russ1642: Jim_Callahan: OK, so let's swap from pasteurization to irradiation treatments (x-ray exposure) as the standard sterilization.  That'll, what, triple the expiration dates on food so we can ship it everywhere?

Oh, wait, farking anti-nuclear conspiracy theorist morons like the people running MNN have shat on anything with the word 'radiation' in it so that we can't have nice things.  How unfortunate.

I think most food irradiation is done with gamma sources (not that there's a physical difference from x-rays). I've had nutters explain to me that microwave ovens leave radiation in food so unless you change the education system in the US you'll never get the people to understand it.


It's worse than that even.  I've talked with science and engineering majors who won't use wifi because it's radiation and can cause cancer.  Oy vey.
 
2013-09-19 02:50:46 PM

Gaseous Anomaly: How else am I supposed to know when my bleu cheese goes bad?


It tastes good?
 
2013-09-19 02:51:25 PM

tuna fingers: I agree with these guys FTFA:
Screw those dates. Arbitrary. Empower yourself and use your senses. Does it look smell or taste gross? No, then eat it!'Use by' is a guideline. Scratch 'n sniff is more effective.  Even more so with pharmaceuticals (within reason).


As someone who has tested pharmaceuticals after 3 years in a controlled "bad" environment (H3/H4 - 40°C 75%RH) I can say that while most will last for decades, you have the problem that a few of them degrade into some nasty chemicals.  Oh, and stay away from acetaminophen if at all possible.
 
2013-09-19 02:52:16 PM
Really? Unnessary? WTH does that mean anyway? Should it be NONnessary, or maybe DISnessary?
 
2013-09-19 02:52:49 PM
I'll chance it with everything but milk. If milk says expires 20 Sep, 11:59 on Sep 19th I am pouring that bastard down the sink. (if I'm up. Otherwise it can wait until morning). I drank chunky milk once. Never again.
 
2013-09-19 02:53:27 PM
just 2 days after a use by date i noticed a moldy substance on some food..
so i will keep a good eye on my food for quite some time.
i will not give the name and will continue to use the product (junk food that i can't live without)
 
2013-09-19 02:53:39 PM

Russ1642: DerAppie: Anything before the date is good 99.999% of the time (packaging errors/damaged packaging might still cause it to spoil). After the date? Don't be a pussy. Your ancestors imported spices to deal with the less-than-fresh taste of foods that were just over the peak. Learn from the past.

They also died of dysentery on the Oregon trail.


Could be worse, they broke a leg and we put them down...

/also hunted for more meat then they could carry back to the wagon, you know, just cause it was fun to shoot tons of shiat
 
2013-09-19 02:55:30 PM
"Use by" dates do have a purpose. On a tour with a friends band years ago, we stopped in a little town in northern California to stock up on road munchies and beer. Several people bought those nasty prepackaged sandwiches that all those places seem to have. When we opened them, they were this awful green color with mold and shiat, so folks checked the "sell by" date on them, and they were literally over a month past due. We took them back into the store and the dude refused to refund our money because the packages were opened. So things started getting nasty and loud. He called the cops. Cops showed up, and we showed them the packages.

Meanwhile, the storekeeper's wife or whoever was in the back of the coolers pulling all the other stuff off the shelves as fast as she could. Cop does a little investigation in the garbage and found out that nearly every food item in the store was at least a couple weeks past the sell-by date and told this greasy little prick to give us back our money. Meanwhile, he's screaming at the cops to arrest us for shoplifting and all sorts of other crap, trying to convince him that we just tried to rob him and such. Cop tells us to leave, and that he was closing the store on an emergency health basis because the store was where the cops had been getting their own road munchies for years.

There is a reason for those expiration dates. I make sure to check all of them now.
 
2013-09-19 02:55:57 PM
If you see a tin can swelled up like a water balloon, nuke it form orbit. Just to be sure...
 
2013-09-19 02:57:08 PM

TheAnusThatAteManhattan: Russ1642: Jim_Callahan: OK, so let's swap from pasteurization to irradiation treatments (x-ray exposure) as the standard sterilization.  That'll, what, triple the expiration dates on food so we can ship it everywhere?

Oh, wait, farking anti-nuclear conspiracy theorist morons like the people running MNN have shat on anything with the word 'radiation' in it so that we can't have nice things.  How unfortunate.

I think most food irradiation is done with gamma sources (not that there's a physical difference from x-rays). I've had nutters explain to me that microwave ovens leave radiation in food so unless you change the education system in the US you'll never get the people to understand it.

It's worse than that even.  I've talked with science and engineering majors who won't use wifi because it's radiation and can cause cancer.  Oy vey.


I've seen it go full retard. I used to work at a small nuclear reactor. The nutcases would get headaches and dizziness just by being in our lab, even when the reactor was off and there was next to nothing radiactive sitting around, and the reactor itself was a couple floors beneath them at the bottom of a deep pool. No matter how much you tried to explain it to them they just couldn't handle seeing all those radioactive warning stickers on everything. They'd probably throw up if they came within three feet of a biohazard sticker.
 
2013-09-19 02:57:52 PM

Deathfrogg: "Use by" dates do have a purpose. On a tour with a friends band years ago, we stopped in a little town in northern California to stock up on road munchies and beer. Several people bought those nasty prepackaged sandwiches that all those places seem to have. When we opened them, they were this awful green color with mold and shiat, so folks checked the "sell by" date on them, and they were literally over a month past due. We took them back into the store and the dude refused to refund our money because the packages were opened. So things started getting nasty and loud. He called the cops. Cops showed up, and we showed them the packages.

Meanwhile, the storekeeper's wife or whoever was in the back of the coolers pulling all the other stuff off the shelves as fast as she could. Cop does a little investigation in the garbage and found out that nearly every food item in the store was at least a couple weeks past the sell-by date and told this greasy little prick to give us back our money. Meanwhile, he's screaming at the cops to arrest us for shoplifting and all sorts of other crap, trying to convince him that we just tried to rob him and such. Cop tells us to leave, and that he was closing the store on an emergency health basis because the store was where the cops had been getting their own road munchies for years.

There is a reason for those expiration dates. I make sure to check all of them now.


Did you get your money back?
 
2013-09-19 02:59:08 PM
The statistics of food waste are staggering. It's estimated that a family of four throws away $2,275 each year in food.

I'm sure I was throwing that amount of food away per month at one time. Jesus, I'm a horrible grocery shopper. Finally got tired of seeing good money go down the drain (literally), so now I shop in much smaller increments. Maybe two or max three days worth of meals. I get the smaller sized milk because my son barely touches it, so I'm not tossing a half gallon of milk away every couple of weeks anymore. Instead of cooking a giant pot of spaghetti, I cook smaller portions knowing now that I am NOT going to eat spaghetti everyday for the rest of the week, no matter how much I convince myself that I will. Instead of gettinga satchel of bananas, like I'm expecting Grape Ape for dinner, I just get a few ripe ones so that only one or two are left at the end of the week. Etc.
 
2013-09-19 02:59:24 PM
How about not buying more food than you're capable of eating before it spoils?  That would help.
 
2013-09-19 03:00:15 PM

Russ1642: Jim_Callahan: OK, so let's swap from pasteurization to irradiation treatments (x-ray exposure) as the standard sterilization.  That'll, what, triple the expiration dates on food so we can ship it everywhere?

Oh, wait, farking anti-nuclear conspiracy theorist morons like the people running MNN have shat on anything with the word 'radiation' in it so that we can't have nice things.  How unfortunate.

I think most food irradiation is done with gamma sources (not that there's a physical difference from x-rays). I've had nutters explain to me that microwave ovens leave radiation in food so unless you change the education system in the US you'll never get the people to understand it.


I just agree with them, and talk about how sometimes you can actually feel the infrared radiation emitted by something that's been in the microwave.
That usually confuses them.
 
2013-09-19 03:00:57 PM

LoneVVolf: If you see a tin can swelled up like a water balloon, nuke it form orbit. Just to be sure...


Unless it's surströmming, then you know it's ready
 
2013-09-19 03:01:00 PM

MythDragon: I'll chance it with everything but milk. If milk says expires 20 Sep, 11:59 on Sep 19th I am pouring that bastard down the sink. (if I'm up. Otherwise it can wait until morning). I drank chunky milk once. Never again.


I like those Listerine breath strips. NEVER eat one of those if it's old. My god. Thankfully there were no guns around cause I'd have gladly eaten a bullet to get that taste out of my mouth.
 
2013-09-19 03:01:12 PM

Carn: So I guess eat more fresh food and it's less of a problem?


They're the ones that need it most.  I have no idea if the blueberries I get will last 4 days or 14 days.

/have gotten both
//hard as single guy to make it through a whole pack in 4 days if you want some variety in your fruit
 
2013-09-19 03:04:36 PM

12349876: Carn: So I guess eat more fresh food and it's less of a problem?

They're the ones that need it most.  I have no idea if the blueberries I get will last 4 days or 14 days.

/have gotten both
//hard as single guy to make it through a whole pack in 4 days if you want some variety in your fruit


A whole pack can make it through me in less than four hours.
 
2013-09-19 03:06:06 PM

DROxINxTHExWIND: The statistics of food waste are staggering. It's estimated that a family of four throws away $2,275 each year in food.

I'm sure I was throwing that amount of food away per month at one time. Jesus, I'm a horrible grocery shopper. Finally got tired of seeing good money go down the drain (literally), so now I shop in much smaller increments. Maybe two or max three days worth of meals. I get the smaller sized milk because my son barely touches it, so I'm not tossing a half gallon of milk away every couple of weeks anymore. Instead of cooking a giant pot of spaghetti, I cook smaller portions knowing now that I am NOT going to eat spaghetti everyday for the rest of the week, no matter how much I convince myself that I will. Instead of gettinga satchel of bananas, like I'm expecting Grape Ape for dinner, I just get a few ripe ones so that only one or two are left at the end of the week. Etc.


Jesus, my wife and I spend about $5000/year on food.

Mostly I use sell by dates on things like eggs to see how long they are likely to last. If the grocery store is selling eggs with sell by dates a few days away (fark you Randall's), I stay away.

On the other hand I sometimes buy 36 eggs at Costco with sell by dates far in the future. I ate three this morning that were "best by" yesterday. That doesn't worry me.
 
2013-09-19 03:06:11 PM

Gaseous Anomaly: How else am I supposed to know when my bleu cheese goes bad?


For that matter, what about my sour cream?
 
2013-09-19 03:06:44 PM

KellyX: Did you get your money back?



Yeah, every penny that was on the receipts. And we got to keep all the Cheetos, Fritos, and Doritoes, the case of cokes, and the beer that we stocked up on. That shiat lasted us all the way to Los Angeles. That band played the very last show ever at CBGB about a year later.
 
2013-09-19 03:07:56 PM

MythDragon: I'll chance it with everything but milk. If milk says expires 20 Sep, 11:59 on Sep 19th I am pouring that bastard down the sink. (if I'm up. Otherwise it can wait until morning). I drank chunky milk once. Never again.


It's just cottage cheese, innit?

/agrees, cottage cheese is nasty, pour away and stay thirsty, my friend.
 
2013-09-19 03:08:53 PM
 A place I used to work at years ago had sandwich vending machine, the guy would come every week or two to replenish the machine, tossing the "past" sandwiches in the garbage. Of course we would fish them out and eat them, they were still good. One guy even left them on a table so's not to make us go through the garbage. Then there was this company a** hole guy who would put his thumb through every "past" sandwich before tossing it in the garbage, real hero, it just pissed us off, wonder what his fark handle is?

/prob worst sentence structure on fark(earth)
//any fark phonics major can have at it
 
2013-09-19 03:09:17 PM

KingKauff: For that matter, what about my sour cream?


I usually figure it'd bad when lots of reddish liquid forms on top, that or it's having a period
 
2013-09-19 03:10:14 PM

weirdneighbour:  A place I used to work at years ago had sandwich vending machine, the guy would come every week or two to replenish the machine, tossing the "past" sandwiches in the garbage. Of course we would fish them out and eat them, they were still good. One guy even left them on a table so's not to make us go through the garbage. Then there was this company a** hole guy who would put his thumb through every "past" sandwich before tossing it in the garbage, real hero, it just pissed us off, wonder what his fark handle is?

/prob worst sentence structure on fark(earth)
//any fark phonics major can have at it


Do you also eat partially eaten eclairs if they're sitting right on top of the other garbage?
 
2013-09-19 03:11:03 PM

LoneVVolf: If you see a tin can swelled up like a water balloon, nuke it form orbit. Just to be sure...


Or a glass jar with the popup thingy pushed out
 
2013-09-19 03:12:50 PM

YixilTesiphon: DROxINxTHExWIND: The statistics of food waste are staggering. It's estimated that a family of four throws away $2,275 each year in food.

I'm sure I was throwing that amount of food away per month at one time. Jesus, I'm a horrible grocery shopper. Finally got tired of seeing good money go down the drain (literally), so now I shop in much smaller increments. Maybe two or max three days worth of meals. I get the smaller sized milk because my son barely touches it, so I'm not tossing a half gallon of milk away every couple of weeks anymore. Instead of cooking a giant pot of spaghetti, I cook smaller portions knowing now that I am NOT going to eat spaghetti everyday for the rest of the week, no matter how much I convince myself that I will. Instead of gettinga satchel of bananas, like I'm expecting Grape Ape for dinner, I just get a few ripe ones so that only one or two are left at the end of the week. Etc.

Jesus, my wife and I spend about $5000/year on food.

Mostly I use sell by dates on things like eggs to see how long they are likely to last. If the grocery store is selling eggs with sell by dates a few days away (fark you Randall's), I stay away.

On the other hand I sometimes buy 36 eggs at Costco with sell by dates far in the future. I ate three this morning that were "best by" yesterday. That doesn't worry me.



Just to clarify, I was exaggerating. If I was throwing away $2200/month in food, I have a good support system around me who would try to whip my ass. That kind of stupidity is frowned upon in my circle.
 
2013-09-19 03:15:57 PM

weirdneighbour: A place I used to work at years ago had sandwich vending machine, the guy would come every week or two to replenish the machine, tossing the "past" sandwiches in the garbage. Of course we would fish them out and eat them, they were still good. One guy even left them on a table so's not to make us go through the garbage. Then there was this company a** hole guy who would put his thumb through every "past" sandwich before tossing it in the garbage, real hero, it just pissed us off, wonder what his fark handle is?


I know that one chip company, which I won't name, policy is to punch a hole through every bag of chips that the route people bring back from the stores if they hit the sell by date before throwing them into the trash bin. I think the idea is to cover their asses, but also to make sure people didn't fish them out and try to resell them.

Brand protection or something I guess.

The chips were still fine too, used to plenty of stales growing up as a kid.
 
2013-09-19 03:16:24 PM

The Crepes of Wrath: How about not buying more food than you're capable of eating before it spoils?  That would help.


Ilive alone, and thatcan be pretty difficult to do at times, unless I'm willing to eat the same thing three times in a week.
 
2013-09-19 03:16:37 PM

12349876: Carn: So I guess eat more fresh food and it's less of a problem?

They're the ones that need it most.  I have no idea if the blueberries I get will last 4 days or 14 days.

/have gotten both
//hard as single guy to make it through a whole pack in 4 days if you want some variety in your fruit


Not me, I'm a blueberry monster.  A big pack is usually two days.  I buy them on sale and freeze or just buy frozen cuz I eat them in large amounts.  Go great in breakfast smoothies.  Blueberries are easy though, check the bottom of the pack when you buy and make sure none are smooshed.  If they are any smooshed ones they will go moldy in a day or two and then you have that fun decision of how much mold am I eating?  But honestly I don't hardly see that any more.  They last at least a week or two in the fridge and basically forever if you freeze.  In the fridge they usually get a little white dot of mold/fungus on the bottom when they start to go bad.  Toss those and eat the rest quick.  And I know for a fact I've accidentally eaten some with the little dots and aside from tasting a little funky they won't hurt you.
 
2013-09-19 03:17:03 PM
And why the fark does using any sort of markup on Fark arbitrarily remove spaces?
 
2013-09-19 03:17:37 PM
You can thank Al Capone for use by dates on milk.

Well, you can thank the dairy that Al Capone bought with kidnapping ransom payments for use by dates on milk.
 
2013-09-19 03:17:44 PM
200 years and still good eatin'.

3.bp.blogspot.com
 
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