Do you live and die by those ‘best-before-dates?’ What if they weren’t there? Would there be less food waste across the country?
That’s why the House of Commons is recommending the federal government investigate how the elimination of these dates on packaged items would impact Canadian consumers.
The committee recommends that Canada, in cooperation with the provinces and territories, address food waste by removing these dates to change the course of how we treat food on a national scale.
Best-before-dates are not expiry dates. They refer to a product’s peak freshness.
According to Health Canada, best-before dates are mandatory on retail-packed foods with a durable life date of 90 days or less.
For example, most canned foods and dry foods, such as pasta and foods that are sold in a frozen state, are not required to be labelled with a best-before date or storage information because they will keep their freshness past three months.
Almost half of all food waste is completely avoidable. This includes leftovers and untouched food that could have been eaten at one point.
It’s estimated that avoidable food waste costs the average Canadian household over $1,300 per year.