dry goods and use by dates

Joined Aug 18, 2007
I'll be interested to hear views on keeping dry goods like pasta, rice, flour etc. past the manufacturers use by date.

At work its down the line of course. Environmental health make the rules and we stick by them.

At home i certainly do not. I have it on good authority that, so long as, say pasta, is kept sealed and dry it can last forever.

Theres always an element of doubt in my mind, so if you know better, do share
Joined Sep 5, 2008
I couldn't care less what the manufacturer's "Use By" date is. Most manufacturer just put some arbitrary dates on those types of goods, just to comply with the laws and regulations in the country where you're buying from. I've seen the same products with "Use By" dates in one country and no date in another country. 

The only problems I've had with dry goods such as rice and pasta are: 

• Food moth

• Rancidity

Both problems may or may not occur way before or way after whatever arbitrary date is indicated on the package (Use by, Best before, Sell before, Consume before etc....). Both problems are easy to spot by sight and/or smell. 

I keep whole rices, pastas and flours in the fridge to delay rancidity. 
Joined Jan 8, 2010
For the restaurant we strictly adhere to the expiry dates on the goods. Whatever is over the date gets tossed.

Well, tossed to my house that is as I don't believe that you can't eat anything over the expiry date and I happily use things personally that are way over the expiry date, obviously depending on what it is and on looks and smell.

Expiry dates on most foods are (more or less) calculated as follows: 95-99% of the product (the percentage depends per country) is still OK on that date (so only 1-5% is off).

On dry goods (salt, coffee, rice, pasta, sugar) the date is absolutely arbitrary.

FF keeps foods in the fridge, I put my rice and flour in the freezer, mainly to prevent weevils (hot climate)
Joined Sep 26, 2012
I had my share of food moth problems. I buy a lot of organic stuff, so it is more prevalent. I now put all my dry goods into airtight lock&lock boxes in the pantry and generally do not give a rat's backside about expiry dates.
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