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UK Supermarkets scrap ‘use-by’ dates on milk leaving shoppers to work it out themselves

UK Supermarkets scrap ‘use-by’ dates on milk leaving shoppers to work it out themselves

It's hoped the move will save millions of pints being unnecessarily poured down the drain.

Some UK supermarkets have scrapped the use-by dates on most of their milk.

It's hoped that this will stop millions of litres of the white liquid being poured down the drain unnecessarily.

According to Safe Foods, a use-by date is a 'safety measure and gives a deadline telling us when our food will become unsafe to eat'.

While some people can tell a piece of food or drink is off simply by smelling it, other items might not be as easily detectable.

Milk is a good example for this as you know when it has gone off.

Some supermarkets in the UK have done away with the sell-by date on most of their milk cartons.

However, it might still be good for a few days after the date that is printed on the bottle or carton.

Marks and Spencers wants shoppers to decide for themselves whether they reckon their product has gone off, rather than be dictated to by a date, according to The Telegraph.

The outlet has revealed milk is 'the third-most wasted food in Britain'.

The liquid falls behind potatoes and bread and there are around 490 million pints worth of the stuff that are dumped every year.

Food waste charity Wrap has crunched the numbers on this and reckons that's £270 million being thrown away.

Wrap's Catherine David said in a statement: “The main reason is not drinking before the use-by date.

“By changing to a best-before date, M&S is instantly helping its customers save money and cut waste by giving them more time to consume the milk they buy.”

And M&S isn't the only supermarket in the UK to dump the use-by date.

Justin Kase z12z / Alamy Stock Photo

Morrisons announced back in January 2022 that it would remove the numbers from 90 per cent of milk bottles and replace it with a 'best before' date.

Speaking about the decision, Ian Goode, senior milk buyer at Morrisons, said it was a 'bold step' but one that needed to be taken.

He told ITV News: "Wasted milk means wasted effort by our farmers and unnecessary carbon being released into the atmosphere.

"Good quality well-kept milk has a good few days life after normal ‘use by’ dates – and we think it should be consumed, not tipped down the sink.

"So, we’re taking a bold step today and asking customers to decide whether their milk is still good to drink.

"Generations before us have always used the sniff test – and I believe we can too."

Featured Image Credit: Simon Dack / Alamy Stock Photo. Julian Claxton / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Marks and Spencer, Food And Drink