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Many Consumers Misinterpret Food Date Labels

A new survey has suggested that many consumers misinterpret the "USE By" and "BEST If Used By" labels found on food. Despite the majority of consumers saying they trust the labels, researchers found they were often misunderstood. Our study showed that an overwhelming majority of consumers say that they use food date labels to make decisions about food and say they know what the labels mean, Catherine Turvey, Public Health Specialist At George Washington University. For the survey, 2,607 adults were asked how they interpreted food date labels. 50% of respondents didn't realize the "BEST If Used By" label refers to the potential for food quality to deteriorate. Meanwhile, 76% of respondents were not aware that food with expired "USE By" labels is unsafe to eat.

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