Food code dating expiration codes

We must rely on our common sense to determine whether or not the expired food is still good to eat.

If it smells or tastes “off” it isn’t worth the risk, particularly in a survival situation in which medical assistance may not be available.

What about a really amazing sale on a packaged food?

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If you keep your cans stashed in cool, dry places, you can store them for years in some cases.

After the dates shown, beauty and cleaning products are probably still safe but may be less effective. It’s best to store bottles in boxes, and then in dark place.

Stronger alcohol and higher levels of hops might extend the shelf life of a beer.

Any dated code on canned food is the date that the items were packaged, not a "use-by" reference for consumers, the USDA says.

Using the date as a reference point, acidic foods like tomatoes, grapefruit and pineapples can last from 12 to 18 months, while less acidic foods like meat and vegetables last anywhere from two to five years, the agency says. Some states do require sell-by or expiration dates on egg cartons by law, but they're not federally required.

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