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readygirl 10-28-2012 03:12 AM

Expiration dates ?
Anybody know how far past the expiration dates it is safe to consume typical canned goods, green beans, corn, chili, etc. Also, why is there an expiration date on bottled water ? Would you be better off to store tap water since it is chlorinated ?

trip286 10-28-2012 03:30 AM

That's some good questions.
I wouldn't fully trust expired goods, even in a can, but I think they would be good for quite a while past their date as long as the can isn't damaged. I can't give even a good guess how long though. I would go with the sniff test. If it smells bad, it is. If it doesn't, I would just cook the hell out of it if it is expired.

Water, I store in gallons, cool dark place, chlorinated, rotate every year at the minimum.

Notdku told me of another forum of his, you'll likely find some great answers there
A site for preppers.

readygirl 10-28-2012 03:43 AM

Thanks Trip, for the feedback, and the link.

trip286 10-28-2012 03:46 AM

Welcome. Hope I don't kill you with bad advice... ;)

c3shooter 10-28-2012 03:46 AM

The "expiration date" on food is generally the "best consumed by" date. Food begins to lose flavor and some vitamins, however, I have eaten military C-Rations (canned food items) that were about 18 yrs old- and am still walking around. Cool, dry, and dark are best for ANY food storage.

IF a can is bulged (typically can ends are pushing out) DO NOT OPEN. If the food has bad smell, off color, do not eat. Dented or rusty cans- pass. Some reading for you- links to a dozen or more articles:

As far as water- no, does not go bad. There can be concerns about very long term stored water picking up chemicals from plastic containers, but the containers meant for beverages (usually PET) limit that a great deal.

You would be better off storing a bit of chlorine (bleach- 5.25% sodium hypochlorite) and using that to treat water a couple of hours before using it. Water that has been chlorinated will gradually lose chlorine when stored- and if water is contaminated later, there may not be adequate residual chlorine to kill the bugs.

HockaLouis 10-28-2012 04:49 AM

Water doesn't go bad in and of itself -- C3 is right. But stagnant water has to have a certain microbial equilibrium that I'd disinfect with a little chlorine. Tap water might have FLOURINE in it for teeth. 1 lb. of chlorine pool shock will treat 9-10,000 gallons and costs a few dollars. Chlorine solution loses its efficacy with time -- consider it to have a 6-month half-life.

As for expiration dates on foodstuffs, the longer you prep the more likely you are to dismiss them to one extent or another...


dog2000tj 10-28-2012 05:50 AM

what expiration dates? :o

USEBOTHHANDS 10-28-2012 06:07 AM

C3 hit the nail on the head...........

with the cannin technology and "safety" practices <he said with a sneer> of cannin now-a-days, the only real reason the dates are on the cans is to give a good indication of "taste, color, and nutrient" decline.

as for edibility, it will be good as long as the can is FULLY intact, meaning no holes. a lil rust won't kill ya, BUT a pressurized can WILL! if either of the can's ends are convex (bent/bowed out), THROW THEM AWAY! same with home canning, if lid is convex, throw it away. bacteria has accumulated inside to the point where they have given off enough CO2 to pressurize the can. BAD, BAD NEWS!

as for water, because it is bottled, the FDA makes the manufacturers put a date on it only for safety precautions. it's better to be safe than sorry.

stored water outta the tap is different, it is chlorinated. it is considered "safe" to drink........outta the tap. once you bottle it, you assume full responsibility for the safe storage and consumption of it.

water is good for a LONG while, but it goes flat. once it goes flat, it tastes like s!-!it, almost not palatable. aerators on the ends of your interior faucets help with this problem when your get it outta your sink @ home, so pouring half of a container of water into another container and shakin the hell outta it tends to put the oxygen back into the water and "refreshes" it for drinkin. if in doubt about drinkin the water though, either add chlorine (Chlorox) to the water (as mentioned by C3) or boil.

hiwall 10-28-2012 01:37 PM

most that store tap water try to rotate it about every 6 months.

willshoum 10-28-2012 02:05 PM

Home canning......

Originally Posted by hiwall (Post 992974)
most that store tap water try to rotate it about every 6 months.

we cleaned out my mothers home from top to bottom. We came across a jar of mustard greens that were canned. It was 22 years old. my mother fried some salt pork and onions and in went the mustard greens. They were still good after all this time.......Know what to look for when foods go bad..... I let my wife do this, shes almost never gets old, make sure you boil it, it might taste like chit but its still water......

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