‘Ignore expiration dates’: the owner of the supermarket chain advises eating expired products

Buying food has become a challenge for many during a pandemic COVID-19. The centers for control and prevention (CDC) of the USA recommended to be within six feet (1.8 m) from other people, but this distance can be difficult to observe at the grocery store. When ordering products on the Internet problem may be an increased demand for shipping, which hinders the receipt of goods. But there is a solution. It wrote about the publication Grow.

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“Now, when food is harder to obtain, it is important to use all that we buy, that we already have in our closets, says Scott Nash, founder and CEO of Mom’s Organic Market, a chain of grocery stores. — Especially because many people now have difficulty with money.”

Nearly four years ago, Nash spent a year eating exclusively expired products and wrote about it in the blog. After his experiment, he set himself the task to prove the expiration dates on the products in fact do not indicate that food has spoiled.

Nash more than 30 years in the grocery business, which helped him to develop effective long-term food storage.

He spoke on what foods you need to take into account shelf life, and some to ignore it. In addition, he shared his strategy of using everything you buy not to waste money and food wasted.

You can safely ignore the expiration dates on some products

There are no Federal regulations requiring manufacturers to specify the expiration dates on packages of food products, except infant formula. Manufacturers decide to print on their products the dates indicating the best by, sell by or use by. The date is often a reflection of when the product is of the highest taste, and not an indicator of how safe it is to use it after this date.

Nash says that many products have an expiry date which can safely be ignored and to use it even after several years after the expiration date. To understand that food is still safe, “trust your eyes and nose”, he suggests.

How to determine security products

Grains, rice, oatmeal, pasta, etc.

“Most of grocery products rarely go bad,” says Nash. If something goes bad, you will usually be able to find it by smell.

“The smell is a great way to assess the freshness of cereals. If it smells rancid, don’t eat it. But there are exceptions, says Nash. For example, pasta will lie more flour. The pasta is dry grain and milled flour. I have never found a pasta that got corrupted. Flour can go bad. You will know which flour or rice has deteriorated, if they have an unpleasant odor or discolored”.

Canned and conservation

“Everything is in cans, a glass jar or bottle, could serve for decades, of course, if it is not broken or tampered with. If the lid on the jar or ballooned out from under it starts to leak fluid, not buy or eat it. If you see a bulge in your Bank, if it is broken or dented, it usually means that the content got corrupted,” says Nash.


The freshness of the chips and nuts can be assessed by smell and taste. “Take, for example, corn chips. People know when they are spoiled because of the characteristic smell of chips coming,” said Nash.

If the shelf life of perishable products expire prepare them

Unlike other commodities, meat and dairy products have an expiry date which you should not ignore. Therefore, if the shelf life of these products in your fridge will expire, prepare them so that they last longer. Nash says: “I like to call it reset the expiration date”.

“If you cook things that have almost expired, and put them in a container in the fridge, it will give you a few extra days to eat these products,” he says.

A few of the ways Nash “prolongs life” food

Save scraps. “Cake or crepe is a great way to use leftovers. Start with five eggs, add a bunch of stuff that you have, for example, olives, tomatoes, onions or even grilled chicken, and pour it into pie shell, add some cheese and bake at a temperature of 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes. That’s all you need to do,” says Nash.

Cut away the mold. “If your cheese is moldy, cut the mold. If you are still worried, use cheese to cook hot dishes such as casseroles, since heat will help to get rid of bacteria,” says Nash.

Fry the fruit and vegetables. “Let’s say I have a bunch of apples about to go bad. I’ll add some butter and cinnamon and cook them, and now I will have a few days to eat these apples. If I have peppers that are beginning to deteriorate, I cut them in cubes, fry in olive oil and put back in the fridge, and I can use them a week later” to share Nash.

Use acid. “If the avocado starts to go bad, I slice it and put it in a container and squeeze on top of a little juice of lemon or lime, and I will have a few days to eat avocado, because the acid keeps it fresh,” advises Nash.

Cook the meat in the sauce. If you have ground beef or chicken, shelf life expires, “cook it with tomato sauce and put back in the fridge. This will help him stay fit for a few days, as the acid in the tomatoes will help keep it.

Make a plan before you shop

Because you have to limit your trips to the grocery store and to be as efficient as possible, at the same time adhering to the principles of social distancing, approach the issue strategically.

“You have to plan everything and buy everything on the list and quickly,” says Nash.

Planning your food and organizing your shopping list can help make trips to the store more efficient.

“You should buy what you need without endangering the lives of others, and to use what you already have at home,” says Nash.

According to him, one of the main elements of the quarantine is the ability to be creative in the kitchen.

“The restaurants are closed, so people cook new dishes, which they are not prepared for a long time. They really need to try new recipes and cook your own food,” says Nash.



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