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FST Farm 2 Fork - What do "Use By" Food Label Dates Really Tell Us?

Consumers are bombarded by a plethora of information on food labels, from explicit warnings to optimistic health claims.

Much of the information is mandated such as allergen content, lot codes, and content sizes. However, other label statements including ”Light”, “All natural”, and “No sugar added” are at the discretion of the food manufacturer.

One type of label statement that is a source of confusion for many consumers is the “Use by” date statement and its many variants.

In this presentation we will explore:

  • Definitions and regulatory aspects of food product dating (lot codes, bar codes, expiration dates, pull dates, use by dates, born on dates, etc.)

  • How are dates determined (regulatory vs. science vs. marketing)

  • How do consumers interpret dates? Safety? Quality?

  • Does food dating contribute to food waste?

  • FDA efforts to harmonize food dating

Friday, April 16 at 12:00pm to 12:45pm

Virtual Event
Event Type

Lecture or Presentation

Event Topic

Academic, Health and Well-being


Community Members, Faculty and Staff, Student, Alumni, Industry Partner, Online


Department of Food Science and Technology
Contact Name

Sheri Cole

Contact Email

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