What do the date labels on your food mean?

‘Best before’ is when your food will be at its best before the date given. After this date, it might not be at its best, but it will still be safe to eat. Use your senses to make a judgement.

Depending on how you store your food you can maintain the quality of it to be good enough to eat after the best before date.

Love Food Hate Waste have produced a guide to a few key food items and how long after the date they can be eaten:

  • Crisps – one month
  • Biscuits – six months
  • Cereals – six months
  • Canned food – 12 months
  • Confectionary – 12 months
  • Pasta sauce – 12 months
  • Dried pasta – three years

‘Use by’ means you must not eat food past the ‘use by’ date, try freezing food before its use by date, you will reduce the amount you may throw away.

'Display until / sell by' These dates are for the retailers – not us at home. You don’t need to worry about these.

Here are our helpful tips to reduce food waste:

  • Purchase some bag clips these can really help things last longer
  • Storage tubs to store leftovers
  • Leftover food recipes, head over to Love Food Hate Waste
  • Freezing what you don’t need; there are lots of foods you can freeze which you might not of know e.g. cheese, milk
  • Make a meal plan for the week
  • Making a shopping list, buy what you need this will help you reduce the amount you waste of food you might not eat and help you save some money
  • Serving the right amount at meal times
  • Ensure your freezer is set to –18 degrees
  • Ensure your fridge is set between 2 and 5 degrees, this helps food stay fresh for longer

Love Food Hate Waste website has some great tips from storing food to leftover recipes.

Why it is important to cut your food waste?

 In the UK we waste around 6.5 million tonnes of food every year, some of this could be saved. Growing, processing, packaging and transporting the food we eat all contributes to climate change. One third of greenhouse emissions globally come from agriculture. If we waste less food we will reduce carbon emissions which is important to reduce the affect of climate change.

It is important we all try to cut our carbon emissions. The University declared a  Climate and Ecological Emergency