Frontline: SP expert on Food labels

21 Apr 2023

In the interview with SP FIRC Manager Wenie Chin, she mentioned that use by date, expiry date, best before date, and sell by date are dates that consumers and retailers should pay attention to. She noted that use by and expiry dates are important to note and once these dates have passed, foods can no longer be consumed safely. She explained that foods are at their optimum condition before their best before date, and sell by dates are indicated for retailers, to help them know when products should be taken off the shelves. Ms Chin noted that these dates are determined by many factors, including individual characteristics of the ingredients, which could also be affected by conditions including water and acidic or alkaline content, on top of the manufacturing process of the product itself. Cautioning consumers against eating expired foods, she explained that some changes on the microscopic level cannot be perceived by the naked eye, and we should not determine if something past its expiry date is still safe for consumption just by looking and smelling it. In certain cases, this could lead to food poisoning or intestinal discomfort. She added that foods past their best before date should also be consumed as quickly as possible. Ms Chin noted in conclusion that consumers should follow proper storage instructions for food products to ensure that they stay safe for consumption. The dates for the food product are only effective assuming that it is stored according to the storage guidelines indicated on the packaging.


SP Sustainability Matters