From today, the East of England Co-op is to start selling tinned food along with dried foods like crisps, pasta and rice after they reach their 'best before' date.

All such goods will be sold for a set price - 10p each.
Best before dates are provided by manufacturers and give a date up to which they are guaranteed to taste their best.  However, most foods with a best before date remain fit for consumption for much longer.  As a result of this, the East of England Co-op hopes that at least two tonnes of food will be saved from being thrown in the bin.
Best before dates are very different to 'use by' dates, which are provided on foods with limited shelf lives.  Use by dates are there to protect consumers from dangerous bacteria that a food could contain after that date.  For this reason, food that is past its use by date should be avoided!
In the UK in 2015, an estimated 7.3 million tonnes of food was thrown away from households alone, whilst in 2016, 10 million tonnes of food and drink was wasted in the post-farm gate food chain.  It's a massive problem, but hopefully this new initiative will be adopted by other supermarkets and will help to reduce food wastage from our shops and homes.

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