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Expiration Dates For 23 Types Of Food

01/18/2013 09:00 am ET | Updated Jan 18, 2013
Flickr: stevedepolo

We've all had our moments of incredulity regarding expiration dates. We sniff open milk cartons, swishing around their contents in search of any strange scents or inconsistencies. When none can be found, some of us declare the milk (or wine, or butter, or eggs -- the list goes on) fine to consume. And it usually is. But this haphazard method of determining how safe our food products are to eat could have dangerous side effects, or, at the very least, the occasional upset stomach.

According to The Boston Globe, a whole lot of Americans believe that consuming foods after their expiration date is unsafe -- three fourths of Americans, to be exact. This could be due to the vague language used to mark the shelf life of foods. Which is why we're here to set the record straight when it comes to expiration dates.

According to WebMD, there are a number of ways to classify food dates: There's the "sell by" date, the "best if used by" date, the "use by" date and the "born on" date. All concern freshness more so than safety.

So how do you determine when food is safe to eat? Sites such as StillTasty.com and EatByDate.com catalog how far past their supposed "best by" dates foods are still eatable. We compiled a few commonly questionable foods below. Check it out!:

How Long Does Your Food Stay Safe To Eat?

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