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Best Before Dates

The “best before” date on a product indicates the date until which the unopened product will retain its durable life, and must include proper storage instructions.

“Packaged On” Dates:

The “packaged on” date is placed on products when they are packaged at the retail store. A product containing a “packaged on” date must also include durable life information.

What if the “best before” date has expired?

  • The food may lose some of its nutritional value (such as Vitamin C).
  • The food may lose some of its flavour or the texture may change.


Your sight, smell, taste and common sense will tell you whether the quality of a product has decreased.
When in doubt, throw it out!
If a product has an expired “best before” date, do not open the product. Once the product has been opened, the opportunity to return it to the retailer is gone.
If you notice an expired “best before” date before you purchase the product, report it to the store manager.
For more information on “best before” dates, visit the Canadian Food Inspection Agency website.