Date code labeling, a new sustainable packaging material and continuing concern about chemicals in packaging were hot topics in the month of May 2019. Based on total number of page views from our global packaging community, the three best-read articles on PackagingDigest.com last month all happened to be food-packaging related.
Our concise review starts at number three and moves up to a surprising winner (in my opinion) this month.
Who has heard the phrase “When in doubt, throw it out”? A lot of American consumers, it seems. They’ve been tossing a lot of still-edible food because the date code on the package has passed. They figure, perhaps rightly so, that it’s not worth the chance on eating something that has expired and might make you sick.
But those codes mostly indicate the date the food will taste best by. They are more of a quality indicator than a food safety warning.
In April 2019, three U.S. agencies—the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)—finally acted to improve the date code labeling guidelines for food sold in the United States. All three agreed to recommend that food companies standardize on “Best If Used By” language for voluntary date-code labeling as part of a new strategy to fight food and packaging waste. Have you updated your codes yet?
NEXT: "Paper or plastic?"...again???