The "sell by" and "best by"on your food could be changing real quick in New York State. There is a proposal to have these changed to make more sense for the consumer and reduce food waste. There are NO current laws from the federal government regarding the dates on labels with the exception of baby formula.

So many Americans say that they misinterpret the date on the food. Just because it says "sell by", does that mean you only have a few days left to eat the food?

Or if the "best if used by" date says something, does that mean that you technically CAN eat the food a couple of days later?

According to the United States Food and Safety Inspection Service here are what the technical terms mean:

  • "Best if Used By/Before" date indicates when a product will be of best flavor or quality.  It is not a purchase or safety date.
  • A "Sell-By" date tells the store how long to display the product for sale for inventory management.  It is not a safety date. 
  • A “Use-By" date is the last date recommended for the use of the product while at peak quality. It is not a safety date except for when used on infant formula as described below.

According to the NRDC (the Natural Resources Defense Council), 40% of all of the food that Americans buy will get thrown out because of the dates on the food, and, not all of it is spoiled or bad.

You can check out the video below on the new proposal:

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