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Why You Shouldn't Shun Expired Foods

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Why You Shouldn't Shun Expired Foods
Photo Liz West/Flickr

Have you ever thrown out milk just because it was past its expiration date? You may have wasted perfectly good milk.

It turns out that milk, orange juice and other foods may be good well past their expiration date, according to  NPR. ''Those 'sell by' dates are there to protect the reputation of the food. They have very little to do with food safety. If you're worried whether food is still OK to eat, just smell it,'' reports Dan Charles.

Charles consulted experts at the National Food Lab in Livermore, California and the Institute of Food Technologists in Chicago. Their verdict was that packaged foods, especially canned items, can be eaten years or decades after their 'sell by' dates.

The trick is in smelling your food. A sniff will let you know if your milk or meat is starting to go bad. Interested in finding our more? Get the full scoop from NPR's blog The Salt


  • deborahErini said on

    According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, The U.S. does not have a uniform system of coding expiration dates on food products as of 2010. The federal government only requires expiration dates on baby foods and infant formula. Other dating on food products is voluntary. Furthermore, the expiration date found on most packaged food is there for a good reason. But that reason may not be precisely what you think it is. Here's how you can decipher it all, and maybe even save some money. Check more here.

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