Facts you need to know about the production date

Canned provisions are one of the best ways to keep food for longer. We like to stock our kitchen cupboards with tins of tomatoe puree and mackerel for our favourite stews. If we’re feeling bougie then maybe some Red Red with baked beans instead of typical gob3.

It isn’t strange that you may place a can so far behind your cupboard that you forget it is even there. On that hunger day (because that day always comes) when you’ve gone through all your canned provisions, that’s when you finally find it. Shining like a halo, you pick it up and smile. But then when you do you suddenly slap your forehead with your palm. Why? Oh no, it’s too late. The Best Before date was three whole months ago.

But no, it’s not too late. Quiet as it’s kept, canned food can last long after the Best Before date. In fact, in certain conditions canned foods can last almost indefinitely. What you should avoid, however, are canned foods with rust, swollen or dented tins. Otherwise, your food is good to go.

Yes, what to look out for is the production date.

Here is why.

The production date is also the manufacturing date. This is the date that the food was made. Now what matters is how fresh the food is.

You can determine this by how close the manufacturing date is to the present date. The closer it is to the present, the fresher it will be if kept under optimal storage.

So the next time you visit your local supermarket or shopping for canned food, take note of these:

1. The can should be in good condition. No rust. No dents. No swelling. Avoid any tins with these.

2. The expiry date is far in the future. And chose Best Before as opposed to cans labelled with Expiry Date. Best Before means you can still eat it even after the date is passed.

3. Make sure the manufacturing date is closest to the present day. Which means your food is fresher and the best option for your kitchen.

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