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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just because it says "best by" does that mean unsafe after that date? I'm guessing it depends on the food item. I'm trying to keep up on the rotation of stock from the stash to the kitchen cabinets, but it can be a little exhausting trying to keep track of all these dates!

How is anyone else dealing with the dates on (store) canned items like veggies, tuna, pasta, and peanut butter? Thanks!
 

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When I buy canned foods, I get the cans from the back of the shelf at the store and check to see if its any different from the front of the shelf. A key to remember is to store what you eat, eat what you store. I'm a huge fan of organizing the pantry and I try to put all "like" items in one row, and every so often I will pick the can that is getting ready to expire. The "best by" is exactly that, "best", not "Bad by", and from what I have read, some of the food will be discolored (store new cans upside down to preven this and cause good "mixing" of the red/yellow dyes) and some food will be bland over time. Always remember though that it if smells bad, if it has any type of "crusty" formation around the inner lid or it just doesn't seem right, throw it out.

I know there are people that have each and every can of food logged, organized and label. But with jobs, kids, schedules this is almost impossible. I focus on my pantry foods for enough to get by for three months and my long term food storage is of course longer.

If there is any type of tool that I can create for you or anyone that will help you track or organize, please let me know. I am currently working on such projects as we speak. This is "prepperLOG" so I want to make it just that for members.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
An organizational log of some sort to keep track of food stores would be excellent! Can't wait to see what you come up with - thanks!
 

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I'm planning for canned foods to be one of the highlights of my preparations. I was going to use a white sticker label system. Basically write the expiration date like this: 03-16 for March 2016. Stick the sticker on the side/bottom/top and rotate stock. I store pretty much any canned foods, from refried beans to chef boyardi (sp), to pineapples.
 

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Good question, I too was unsure how long after their "best by" date canned fOod was good for
 

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Best by = it's shelf stable, just will begin tasting stale after the date

USE BY = do not screw around, legally they have to inform you if it turns dangerous after a certain date.

:idea:
 

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PM me for a spreadsheet that I worked up to calculate my food storage needs. I used the formula and layout from one that i found online but changed alot and added some functionality.
I have no idea where I got it from originally, it's been a long time and there was no contact info on it.
Basically scroll down to the bottom and input the number of people in the household, it will automatically calculate the needed amounts of supplies based on those numbers. You can change the formula to meet your needs by adjusting the number in the "Adult Share Per Week" column. To add additional rows copy another similar row and insert where you need it.
The spreadsheet will automatically compute the target amount and amount needed when you input your amount on hand in the correct column. Status will also change color to provide a quick at-a-glance indicator of the stocked status of that item.
There are some limitations, most of the spreadsheet is self-explanitory. The rows labeled "other" will not automatically compute so you'll have to copy the formula from another row and paste into that row. You will have to change the conditional formatting for column F if you have a version of Excel earlier than 2007 to not exceed 3 rules, currently there are 5.
Everything in there is just a suggestion, change to what you need. Obviously if your family hates Spam and is allergic to salmon then 500 cans of each of those might not go over too well.....
I would attach it but .xls file are blocked.
 

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I've had store-bought canned and dry foods well beyond their "best by" dates and they've been fine (ie I didn't get sick). When I was in college I actually regularly bought my food from a site called Approved Foods which shipped me out bulk packages of foods which were discontinued, de-branded, nearing or past their "best before", etc. Never suffered any ill effects, just saved a load of money!

You're also good for a few days past the "sell by" dates on fresh foods. I think they've actually made those illegal here recently as they were confusing consumers.

As a previous commenter mentioned, it's just the "use by" date you need to watch out for.
 

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Just a quick note, I've put colored stickers on front top of cans/jars to c at a glance the EXPO. date of an item, then just have a log sheet that I hang at front of shelves , also color coated so I can ck. Eco. dates coming due n what to use n testifies.
 

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Canned food is about a quarter of our food preps.. other things that are light we will take with us.. I have read that as long as the can is not swelled or leaking it should be ok..
 
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