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The average American wastes somewhere between 20-25% of the food they acquire.The EPA and USDA recently announced a goal to cut food waste in the U. in half by 2030, and having a better date labeling system is one way to get there.There was no consistency in how this information was displayed or the language that was used.Some companies even tried to use “freshness dating” to sell their products, like in this Pepsi commercial: Some date labels were meant for consumers, while others were just meant for retailers.Date labels of course, aren’t just on milk, they’re on a lot of products.Forty-one states require a date label on at least some food product but there are huge inconsistencies, not just in the wording, but in the meaning of these labels.For example, if a given "Julian date" is "October 5, 1582", this means that date in the Julian calendar (which was October 15, 1582, in the Gregorian calendar—the date it was first established).
The board distributed more than 10,000 copies, and posted the booklet in supermarkets.
And despite what many people assume, they are not about food safety, and were actually never meant to be. Americans had moved further away from their food sources and were eating more packaged foods and getting more of their food in supermarkets.
Consumers wanted a way to measure how fresh their food was.
Eventually consumers started to demand that these dates be put clearly on packaging, and retailers and grocery stores responded.
A few states began to regulate these date labels, but there was no federal level regulation, even though there were a number of attempts.