Sell By Date

UK: Sell-by dates to be canned in war on wasted food

Sell-by dates will be removed from food products in the UK under plans announced today by the Environment Secretary, Caroline Spelman. She’s calling on manufacturers only to carry “use-by” or “best before” advice in an effort to reduce the estimated £12bn mountain of good food that ends up being thrown away after sell-by dates are passed.

In guidance being sent to food companies and supermarkets, the UK government will ask that “use by” labels should only be used where the food could be unsafe to eat after that date. The “best before” dates should indicate the product is no longer at its best but is still safe to eat.

Foods likely to require a “use by” date include soft cheese, smoked fish and ready meals, while biscuits, jams, pickles, crisps and tinned foods will only need a “best before” label.

The guidance has been produced in consultation with supermarkets, food manufacturers, consumer groups, food law enforcement bodies and the Waste and Resources Action Programme (Wrap).

According to Wrap, 5.3 million tonnes of still-edible food is thrown away each year, costing the average family £680 a year, with research showing that confusing date marks is one of the causes of the problem…..

The Independent: Read more