Kids Check Expiration Dates


Kids can check for expiration dates on the boxes, cans, bottles, and other food packages in the pantry. The expiration date tells kids when the food should be used. Kids can go through the refrigerator shelves and search for the date stamped on the containers of ketchup, mustard, and milk. After consulting with a parent, kids can throw out all the food with an expired date as the product is no longer safe to eat. Food packaging is designed to sell the product and often distracts kids and parents from reading the nutrition label or the expiration date. Many companies are using more sustainable packaging made from biodegradable plastics rather from non-renewable oil resources. It is a good idea to eat food as fresh as possible, like when kids pick salad greens fresh from the backyard garden for dinner. Some packages at the grocery store say sell by, meaning grocers should take this product off the shelves; other label say use by, best by or expires on, after this date the food is unsafe to eat. Bacteria growing in foods no longer fresh can cause food poisoning. Ancient civilizations used natural additives like salt, vinegar, and honey to preserve foods. Today some manufacturers add chemical substances to food products to change the color, appearance, and longevity of the food product. Kids can read the nutrition labels to see if these chemical additives are in their food. Kids can be food detectives in their kitchens, throwing out any food that is past its expiration date to protect their family from unsafe food.

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