Monday Moaning

Use by… Best before… Display until… Expiry date…

Does all this get confusing?

All products have to have dates, it’s the law.

Ridiculous; salt has an expiry date, salt? It doesn’t need one. Salt will be salt long after you’ve shuffled off this mortal coil. Salt can’t expire!

Past its 'Best by' date

Some products need some form of guide because many people today just don’t know about food like their mothers and grandmothers did.

Dairy products for example, but if your bread looks like this, then you know that it’s best before date, in this case, is well past.

But is it really necessary to throw away anything the minute its date says its no good any more?

Check this story out:

German pensioner eats 64-year-old US lard

Hans Feldmeier tasted the lard along with scientists in a lab

A German pensioner who received a tin of American lard 64 years ago in an aid package has only just tasted it, after discovering that it is still edible.

“I just didn’t want to throw it away,” said Hans Feldmeier, 87.

Food safety experts in Rostock, his home town on Germany’s Baltic coast, said the pig fat was still safe to eat.

Mr Feldmeier was a student in 1948 when the US was running a huge aid programme to rebuild war-ravaged Germany. He kept the tin of lard for emergencies.

A retired pharmacist, he decided to get the lard tested because of the debate about expiry dates and food safety.

A food expert, Frerk Feldhusen, said the lard was rather gritty and tasteless and hard to dissolve, though quite edible. Mr Feldmeier provided some black bread to go with it.

The red, white and blue tin of Swift’s Bland Lard bore no expiry date.

Mr Feldhusen said the test result might make some consumers think twice before discarding food immediately after the expiry date.

Source: BBC News

Most can goods can be used after their expiry dates.

You don’t need to throw them out on the date.

The companies love it.

You throw out good food and then you have to buy more.

Use your commonsense.

That lard lasted 64 years. I bet if that was manufactured today, it would have a six month, maybe a years validity.

If you open a can of anything after the recommended date, stick your finger in, touch it to your tongue, if it tastes acid or sharp, don’t use it.

If there is no taint, I’d go for it being okay. I’ve lived by this rule all my life, I’m a chef; so far, so good, I’m still here sixty years on and I haven’t managed to poison anyone yet.

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8 responses to this post.

  1. It’s really a shame that people don’t “know” stuff anymore. My parents and grandparents preserved food and the rules were known by the whole family … if a can was swollen toss it … if a jar didn’t “pop” when opened, toss it … if a food smelled bad, tasted funny or looked rotten, don’t use it. We’ve gotten away from trusting our senses and common sense … and we’re letting corporations think for us. That being said, I also adhere to the adage … when in doubt, toss it out. I’ve had food poisoning and it’s not fun. But there are very few things that fall into that middle ground … most stuff, if one thinks about it & uses their senses, is obvious!

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    • @SF, it all boils down to complacency, we have been too used to being spoon-fed and it seems as though we don’t need this ‘old knowledge’ any more. But we do. I had forgotten to mention the swollen can and preserves jar not popping. Thanks for that.

      AV

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  2. Great post! I usually throw something out if it is 6-12 months past the expiry date. My husband is pretty OCD about finding the date on products and if there is no date, he throws it out. I need to be more creative 🙂

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  3. I’ve always wondered about this! Thanks for the guidelines!

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    • @Alicia, because the govts say so, we believe it’s true. That is the problem. The govts have made many of the regulations at the behest of the industry, because they know if we throw it out, we’ll buy new stuff.

      AV

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  4. I hate that people throw perfectly good food away because of the date.If it has mold n it, it smells funny or taste bad than don’t eat it. I have eaten bread after the best before date and I am still alive to tell the story! 🙂

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  5. @GGGG, absolutely right, common sense. Like you, I am still here; and as I said in the post, I haven’t managed to poison anyone yet, God knows, I’ve tried. *Thinking of ex-wife*

    AV

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