When Seconds Sell First

ABC News reports that Amelia’s Grocery Outlet, an 11-store supermarket chain in Pennsylvania, is selling groceries that have old promotions, damaged packaging or an expired sell-by date. I’m sure they’re receiving their Easter stuff as you read this.

1. This story was pegged to the recession, but there’s not much new here. There have always been a secondary market for “close-outs,” dinged cans and old and damaged packaging (visit a Big Lots, Dollar General, etc.). Amelia’s seems to be along those lines.

2. On the other hand, this is the first time I’ve read a food retailer question the excessive caution of expiration dates (for things like cereal and bottled water).

“The products are very well preserved and the quality holds up way beyond the freshness date,” Mitchell said.

Note: While dented cans are probably fine, steer clear of bulging cans.

3. It’s important to note that food items don’t immediately turn into a pumpkin harmful at midnight on the eve of their expiration date. With most items, flavor and/or texture go first, before the food’s safety comes into question.

4. On a lighter note: While we’re talking about expiration dates, read this entertaining tale about marriage, neighbors and expiration dates. Are you an EH or an ED??

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