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Calls To Scrap Use-By Dates On Jersey Milk

There are calls for Jersey Dairy to consider removing use-by dates on its cartons in an attempt to cut down on waste.

It's after Morrisons in the UK said it would be scrapping them in place of 'best before' dates and asking customers to use the 'sniff test' to check whether milk is off.

Channel 103 has learned that Jersey Dairy previously considered making the change to its safety labels in 2019, but it went against Food Safety Authority recommendations at the time so wasn't pursued.

Carl Walker, who chairs the Jersey Consumer Council, says 'it makes perfect sense' to try and cut down on food waste - and if the rules allow he would like to see Jersey milk follow the same approach:

"We can see the popularity of apps over here that give food away once it's past that use-by date and it just goes to show that sometimes there's a legal requirement for supermarkets to throw away food once it passes that date when it's still perfectly edible."

"What Morrisons are doing is taking us back a generation to when people used to get milk delivered to their doorstep by the milkman - with no dates on at all - and you would be able to use the taste or smell whether it's good to consume."

Morrisons has announced it plans on removing 'use-by' dates from most of its milk

Mr Walker says some products need to make it clear when they shouldn't be consumed though:

"In terms of use-by dates, you'll still find those on meat products and foods like soft cheeses that could become poisonous if you consume it even if it looks fine.

"That said, I think consumers do mix up use-by and best before dates, and using more standardised labels across the board applying a bit of common sense would help to cut down waste".

Jersey Dairy says so-called 'sniff tests' are a new trend "which definitely need some further investigation".

It has reached out to specialist food and drink scientific advisors, Cambden BRI, to ask its recommendations on whether to use 'best before' or 'use-by' dates on its pasteurised milk cartons.

A spokesperson says any change to Jersey milk safety labels would need to be approved by Public Health.

"Pasteurised milk is a perishable good and any changes to product durability need to be carried out to include many scientific factors impacting on Product Safety and Quality.

"The shelf life of Jersey Dairy fresh milk is 14 days. However, when stored appropriately, Jersey milk usually stays fresh for longer due to the excellent quality of the milk.

"Jersey Dairy raw milk quality is excellent with parameters highly exceeding milk averages produced in the UK and elsewhere. This condition and continuous control helps Jersey Dairy to extend product shelf life which is an excellent way to tackle waste."

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