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Thread: what does the "sell by" date mean on meat?

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    redding, ca usa
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    what does the "sell by" date mean on meat?

    How long do you use your meat after this date? I went to a new store and didnt notice until I got home the selly by date was only 2 days after I bought my meat and was already turning brown. I can normallybuy my meat for the week without freezing it.
    Laurie

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
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    Columbia, MD
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    The sell date is what is required by the Dept of Agriculture, I think. It doesn't mean the meat is bad. If the red meat turns brown, it means that some oxygen has gotten in but you can still eat the meat if you don't let it sit around vey long. Otherwise i would freeze it. My refrigerator is quite cold, but if yours isn't I
    wouldn't keep meat more than 3 days.

    Sami
    Don't give up, Moses was once a basket case.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
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    Texas
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    What does the "sell buy" date mean???

    Absolutely nothing! It isn't required and stores can legally re-wrap and change the "sell by" date as they see fit. I have been stung by this before. Bought 2 whole chickens with a week left in the "sell by" date. Opened the wrapping to roast the next day and had to dump them both in the trash and take the trash immediately outside! So I do buy using the date but only trust my nose when actually using the meat.
    Well-behaved women seldom make history!

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    I have also learned (the hard way) that no matter what the date, the meat/poultry doesn't keep as well in my fridge as it does in the colder one at the market. So I always freeze my meat/poultry if I'm not using it the day I buy it or the next day. Otherwise, it tends to go bad.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    I tried to cook some bacon with a sell by date of 2 days ago (I bought it 3 days ago). It tasted like sour MILK!!!
    ~Kim~

    Nashville Restaurant Examiner - check out my page
    Check out my blog: Zen Kitchen http://onehotkitchen-kim.blogspot.com/

    "Without question, the greatest invention in the history of mankind is beer. Oh, I grant you that the wheel was also a fine invention, but the wheel does not go nearly as well with pizza."
    Dave Barry

  6. #6
    My rule of thumb, cook or freeze within one day of buying.
    But I'm kind of a food safety nut so I don't actually think
    that's necessary. I just prefer it that way.

  7. #7
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    thanks for all of the input, I think you should be able to use the meat for at least a week at the sell by date. but doesnt sound like its a good idea.
    Laurie

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Texas
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    It's always been suggested that you not store fresh meat in the wrapping that it comes in from the store (I think this is really talking about the butcher paper but I try to do this with all meat). I have a Food Saver and for meats that I know I'm not using for a couple of days I will vacumn wrap them and this way I can smell the meat (not often fun but I have returned meat that smells bad the same day I bought it).
    Well-behaved women seldom make history!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    SO. CA
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    2,227
    I always check the date too. When I bring the meat or poultry home I always freeze it. When I buy chicken breasts in bulk @ Albertson, I a wrap two breasts in a zip lock bag, then put all the bags in a large ziplock and freeze at once. I mark each baggy with the date. I do the same with hamburger meat, either # pkgs or make 6oz patties, with waxed paper inbetween. Never had to question the meat.
    The butcher told me that smoke hams can be kept several weeks longer in the fridge than the pull date. I would take it back if I got stuck with a spoiled meat or chicken! Let the store know about it! I had bought a very nice oven roast (choice) for Father's day and it was tough as a boot! I brought it back, with the label on the meat, and got my money back!
    Curleytop

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