The Antigua Charter Yacht Show has pushed back the dates of this year's show to December 6-12 in an attempt to allow more yachts and…
On many yachts, stews will inherit an assortment of bottles, jars, and cans of food in cupboards and refrigerators. It’s important to understand date labels on foods and to know what to toss and what to keep.
Date labels are not as strict as you may think. “Best by,” “Sell by,” and “Use by,” date markings have different definitions. For many foods, those dates are a rough suggestion. Infant formula carries the only federally regulated food date label. All other food dating is voluntary and assumes that storage conditions may not be ideal in grocery stores and homes.
The “Best by” date refers to the period the product will be at the best flavor or quality. The food is edible after this date but may not taste as good.
The “Sell by” date is provided by the producers to let sellers know when to remove items from the shelves. It is to ensure that customers get the item at its optimal quality. Depending on the item, food will last for several days to several weeks past the date if stored properly.
The “Use by” date is the last day the producer guarantees the best quality of a product. It is not a safety date or mandatory label, except in the case of infant formula.
As for the opened refrigerated condiments and salad dressings found on most boats, here are some rough guidelines. Of course, visually inspect all items and check for unusual odors. Going forward, label containers with the date they are opened.
Alene Keenan is a veteran Chief Stew, interior training instructor/consultant, and the author of several guidebooks for crew.Topics: