14 January 2012, Comments 0

Different people have different views when it comes the sell by dates that you see on food labels. I know that if something is even one day out of date my mum will throw it away without giving it a second thought where as I know other people who don’t even look at the sell by date, if it doesn’t smell funny and is not covered in mould it is OK in their eyes.

Now I know that is a bit extreme but the reason I am talking about this subject is because there was a programme on the television last week which made a point of saying that so much food is wasted because of these sell by dates and the superficial standards which certain foods have to meet, that it is something of a scandal.

What must be realised is that with supermarkets, appearance is everything and that is why as soon as something reaches its sell by date it is instantly reduced, that is if it is not snapped up by the staff who work there before it is offered to the general public.

"supermarket shopping"

Now with products such as milk and bread, it is easy to tell if they are past their best but what about tinned food and food that is sold in packets.. Experts are now arguing that many food types can be eaten long after their sell by dates but still the supermarkets refuse to budge, perhaps it is because they know that by using sell by dates they will be able to sell more.

One thing that does annoy me though is that everything does have to be perfect to be sold in a supermarket, especially fruit and veg. I can guarantee that you won’t find the kind of apples that are available on your local market stall in the supermarket, and the reason for that is that they are not perfectly shaped as well as being the right colour.

Alarm bells should start ringing though when you realise what the suppliers to the supermarkets have to do to the fruit and veg in order to get accepted by the supermarkets. You can’t blame these suppliers as they are only trying to make a living, but if the supermarkets were a little less rigid in their regulations we would all probably be better off and also get to eat far better quality food.

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