Sometimes I worry I look like grody because I often take chances with food safety.
"Does this cheese look okay?"
"Is this milk good to drink?"
"This is past its due date, should I throw it away?"
These are questions I don't really ask. And turns out, I'm good that way!
Consumer Reports says there is a difference between best-by, sell-by and use-by dates.
The truth is, those dates usually have little to do with food safety... and more with food quality. Bottom line - you can eat it.
FOR EXAMPLE - the bugs responsible for the yearly 48 million illnesses and 3,000 deaths from foodborne pathogens don't cause spoilage. That means if they're in the food, they're in the fresh food, too. So, don't automatically assume the chicken or beef your'e eating contains harmful bacteria.
The only food that is required to have a date label is infant formula. And that is not even about safety. It's about nutrition.
Consumer Reports says surface mold on hard salami, country hams, hard cheeses and firm vegetables can be scrubbed off. And I just read an article that said you can take sour milk and turn it into cottage cheese!
RECIPE: Turn sour milk into cottage cheese
Other random facts:
- Eggs can be kept up to 5 weeks
- Milk can be kept for a week
- Hard cheese can be kept for 6 months unopened, 4 months after opening
- Soft cheese can be kept for about two weeks
- Poultry and seafood can be kept up to 2 days raw and 4 days cooked
- Meat can be kept up to 6 days raw and 4 days cooked
- Salad dressing 10-12 months on the shelf, 1 to 3 months refrigerated after opening
Read more at Consumer Reports -- and catch me on the news Mondays and Saturdays with more consumer tips!