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Study samples expiration dating

With an exception of infant formula (described below), if the date passes during home storage, a product should still be safe and wholesome if handled properly until the time spoilage is evident (Chill Refrigerate Promptly).

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These products will typically maintain product quality for a longer period of time because of how the products are formulated or packaged.Additionally, immediately adjacent to the date must be a phrase explaining the meaning of that date such as "Best if Used By." [Top of Page] Are Dates for Food Safety or Food Quality?Manufacturers provide dating to help consumers and retailers decide when food is of best quality.“Closed Dating” is a code that consists of a series of letters and/or numbers applied by manufacturers to identify the date and time of production.[Top of Page] Does Federal Law Require Food Product Dating?It is also based on the conditions of handling, storage, preparation, and use printed on the label.

Do not buy or use baby formula after its "Use-By" date. Can codes are a type of closed dating which enable the tracking of product in interstate commerce.

Factors including the length of time and the temperature at which a food is held during distribution and offered for sale, the characteristics of the food, and the type of packaging will affect how long a product will be of optimum quality.

Manufacturers and retailers will consider these factors when determining the date for which the product will be of best quality.

Except for infant formula, product dating is not required by Federal regulations.

For meat, poultry, and egg products under the jurisdiction of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), dates may be voluntarily applied provided they are labeled in a manner that is truthful and not misleading and in compliance with FSIS regulations.

"Closed or coded dates" are a series of letters and/or numbers and typically appear on shelf-stable products such as cans and boxes of food. There are no uniform or universally accepted descriptions used on food labels for open dating in the United States.