Food labels and expiry dates

Best Before...I have a confession to make. Before becoming pregnant, I paid little mind to the expiry dates on food labels, often taking the ‘sniff test’ approach to determine whether or not something was still fit for consumption.

I know I’m not alone in this habit.

Many people have told me they do the same thing, or will take the other approach to food safety, that is, a food is simply ‘best before’ its best before date – and is still probably good for a couple of days after that.

While we know these things can potentially put us at risk for illness, we do them anyways – whether out of a sense of obligation to eat what we’ve paid good money for or because it’s something we really enjoy.

But when it comes to being pregnant, you’re more susceptible to food poisoning and other nasty gastrointestinal upsets than the general population, and so proper food safety becomes paramount.

Which is why, the other day, I emptied out our fridge and threw out everything that had expired (Diana’s sauce circa 2009?) or didn’t have an expiry date on it and which I couldn’t remember buying. Why take the chance, right?

We’ve waited so patiently and been so looking forward to little one’s arrival it seemed silly to take such an easily avoidable risk. And besides, if it hasn’t been used in so long that I can’t remember when it last passed my lips, then it’s probably not that imperative to keep around.

I don’t know if I’ll keep up this practice after little one is born. I know for him/her I probably won’t let anything within a week of going bad near that child, but only time will tell if I’ll get more lax when it comes to what hubs and I are eating again.

Mamas: Were you extra vigilant when it came to food safety while you were pregnant?

Photo via: Ev0luti0nary, Flickr.com

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