The calendar date provides consumers with information on the estimated period of time for which the product will be of best quality and to help the store determine how long to display the product for sale.
“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. Except for infant formula, product dating is not required by Federal regulations.
Food spoilage can occur much faster if it is not stored or handled properly.
Viruses are not capable of growing in food and do not cause spoilage.
There are two types of bacteria that can be found on food: pathogenic bacteria, which cause foodborne illness, and spoilage bacteria, which cause foods to deteriorate and develop unpleasant characteristics such as an undesirable taste or odor making the food not wholesome, but do not cause illness.
Manufacturers provide dating to help consumers and retailers decide when food is of best quality.
Except for infant formula, dates are not an indicator of the product’s safety and are not required by Federal law.