Would You Buy Expired Food To Save Money?
It happens to me frequently. I pull out a loaf of bread, or what’s left of a gallon of milk only to find the expiration date has passed. I visually inspect whatever it is I’m holding, then give it a good sniff. If it passes those two tests, what I do next really depends upon it’s purpose. If it’s for my wife, I don’t use it. Ever. If she finds out I gave her expired food she mystically and immediately doesn’t feel well. If it’s for me, down the hatch it goes.
But is it safe to consume expired food?
I saw a story on the morning news this week that gave some very interesting facts on expired food. It’s estimated that 40% of all food produced in the US is wasted due to food passing the expiration date, costing the average household nearly $1500 a year.
That’s a lot of rotten tomatoes.
The story went on to report that there’s really no science behind the date you see on the package other than the manufacturer’s best guess as to when the product may be at it’s peak freshness and quality. You should really check your products for freshness by visually inspecting and smelling your products even if it’s within the expiration date.
There’s no guarantee that the product will be good all the way up to the expiration date.
There’s also no magic fairy that goes around and causes food to spoil right on the expiration date. In fact, many products are just fine long after the printed date. It is for this reason that there are stores popping up across the country that specialize in selling expired food products at deep discounts.
For example, a package of ground coffee that sells for $8.99 at a grocery store is priced at $3.99 at one of the discount stores. At the same store, a box of crackers past it’s expiration date that normally sells for $4.21 is discounted to 2 for $1.
They do not sell expired meat products as that has more serious health concerns, whereas I guess expired coffee or crackers would just run the possibility of being stale or not quite at it’s peak freshness.
My question for you, Clever friends, is would you buy expired food if it would save you money? If one of these stores were near me, I would check it out in a heartbeat, how about you?
Brought to you courtesy of Brock
Brock is a software engineer by day and personal finance blogger at night. He is a fitness junkie and enjoys grilling and smoking meat. Married with two children, Brock strives to improve his skills as a husband and father, and is always on the lookout to stretch his family’s budget as far as he can.