Use by v. Best Before v. Sell by v. Display until

What is the difference between the different dates manufacturers and shops put on food?

Well, essentially, Sell by and Display until are nonsense. They are simply there as a calculation by the shop of how long the food will look good!

What matters, and the only one with any legal validity, is Use By. This is about the safety of the food, not its appearance. If food is being sold after its Use By date, then the retailer is committing an offence.

Here is a handy little summary gleaned from the Food Standards Agency website (

“‘Best before’ dates relate to food quality, including taste, texture and appearance. Eating food past its ‘best before’ date is unlikely to be harmful.

‘Use by’ date are the most important date for people to consider, as these relate to food safety.

While it is an offence to sell food after the ‘use by’ date, retailers can, with the exception of eggs, sell products after the ‘best before’ date, providing it is safe to eat. Eggs have a ‘best before’ date, but should not be eaten after the date shown on the label.

Retailers often use ‘sell by’ and ‘display until’ dates on their shelves, but these are not required by law and are used mainly for stock control purposes.”

Clearer? Good. Don’t want anyone getting ill over the festive season.

Bon Appetit and Happy New Year.

WARNING for all Samsung phone users

MoneySavingExpert has uncovered that users of pre-April 2014 Samsung smartphones are being conned.

Apparently, on these phones, when you type a smiley, i.e. :-), the phone converts the entire messageĀ from a standard SMS text message into an MMS picture message, which are much more expensive.

People are getting bills for hundreds of pounds more than expected (known as ‘bill shock’) because of this.

If you have a post-April 2014 phone, apparently, this will not happen, but if your phone is more than six months old, you could be in trouble.

Read the whole story here.

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