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If you hate to buy a product that expires before you have the chance to use it, try buying by expiration date.
A strategy most stores use is to stock products with the latest expiration in the back and keep the ones with closer expiration dates near the front to help keep their supply fresh. Next time you’re searching for a product you won’t use immediately, look to the back of the shelf to see if there’s a later expiration date available. This gives you more flexibility on when to use the product. Note that some new stockers may not be familiar with this practice and will add the fresher products at the front to save time. It’s always worth checking the front and the back, just in case.
Expiration or “best by” dates are usually stamped in black ink and found on the top or bottom of the product. It’s wise to also employ this tactic in your own stockpile by adding the freshest product behind the older ones. If it helps, you can write the expiration date in marker on the facing side when you get home to better help you keep track. Also note that many products may be good a little after the stated date as long as they were sealed and stored correctly (e.g. yogurt, eggs, honey, and brown sugar). “Sell by” dates are still good for days after, while “expiration” dates are more final and should be tossed out if the date has passed. Expiration dates are especially important for fresh meats, active dry yeast, infant formula, and baby food.