Store Specializes In Foods Past Expiration Date

A store in Kentucky sells foods past their expiration dates, often at half the original prices. So is it safe?
Posted at 2:54 PM, Sep 09, 2014

Whether we're at the grocery store or in our own pantry, we can all probably say we've checked the "Best If Used By" date on food products. But one store in Kentucky is doing very well selling those items most of us would probably disregard or just throw away.

"Where can you get Starbucks for more than half off, Wheat Thins for 50 cents a box due to slightly damaged packaging?"

"We have 2,000 to 3,000 people a day in this one store."

The store B & E Salvage sells items that have been taken off the shelves of main markets. 

B&E SALVAGE OWNER HUGH HARTFORD VIA NBC: "We sell out-of-date, we sell close date, and we wouldn't sell you nothin' we wouldn't eat ourselves."

And it turns out expired doesn't always mean unsafe and labels are more of just an estimate. 

This misconception and dependence on food labels leads 9 out of 10 people in the United States to throw away their outdated foods, according to a survey by the Food Marketing Institute.

But the Natural Resources Defense Council reports there's more than one reason to not depend on the label.

"While the mistaken belief that past-date foods are unsafe leads directly to food waste, over reliance on date labels may also have a detrimental effect on consumer health and safety."

There are many factors that food labels don't acknowledge, like time and temperature. The council claims if the food safety information is not conjoined with the label, then the suggested date is "meaningless."

So if we can't trust food labels, what can we trust?

Apparently our instincts. A Dare to Care Food Bank spokesman gave The Courier-Journal insight: "The best test for safety are your own senses, your eyes and your nose."