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Best If Used By Dates

Based on DOD 4145.19-R-1
(In Months)

The "Best If Used By" date is intended to tell you how long the product will retain best flavor or quality. The term is not a safety date. "Best If Used By" dates are intended as useful guidelines. Some foods may deteriorate more quickly and other foods may last longer than the times suggested.

A number of factors can shorten the useful life of a food product, such as improper handling and inadequate storage temperatures. The inventory control method of "first-in, first-out" should be practiced by those responsible for managing commodity inventories and distribution at the State and local levels. Products kept past the "Best If Used By" date are not necessarily "out of condition." Food products may be eaten after the "Best If Used By" date if the product has been properly stored, handled, and the primary container is in good condition.


GROUP A Storage Time in Months

Dry 40° F 70° F 90° F
Fruit      
Applesauce, cnd 48 24 12
Apple Slices, cnd 48 24 12
Apricots, cnd 48 24 12
Cherries, cnd 36 18 9
Date Pieces Refrigerate for up to 5 months - freeze for up to 1 year.
Fig Nuggets Store at 55° F or below for up to one year.
Mixed Fruit, cnd 48 24 12
Peaches, cnd 48 24 12
Pears, cnd 36 18 9
Pineapple, cnd 48 24 12
Plums, cnd 36 18 9
Plum/Prune Puree Store in cool, dry area. Use within 9 months of delivery.
Prunes, Pitted, Dried 18 9 5
Raisins, Seedless 18 9 5
Beans, Dried      
Beans, Blkeye 24 12 9
Beans, Great Northern 24 12 9
Beans, Lt Kidney 24 12 9
Beans, Red Kidney 24 12 9
Lentils 24 12 9
Beans, Lima 24 12 9
Beans, Pea 24 12 9
Beans, Split Pea 24 12 9
Beans, Pinto 24 12 9
Beans, Sm Red 24 12 9
Vegetables      
Beans, Veg, cnd 48 24 12
Beans, dry, cnd 72 36 18
Beans, Refried (lowfat), cnd 72 36 18
Beans, Green, cnd 48 24 12
Carrots, cnd 60 30 15
Corn, cnd 72 36 18
Peas, cnd 72 36 18
Salsa, cnd 48 24 12
Spaghetti Sauce, Meatless, cnd 48 24 12
Sweet Potatoes, cnd 48 24 12
Tomato Paste, cnd 36 18 9
Tomato Products, cnd 48 24 12
Meat/Meat Alternatives      
Beef NJ, cnd 60 36 18
Pork NJ, cnd 60 36 18
Poultry, cnd 60 36 18
Lunch Meat, cnd (Offshore) 60 36 18
Egg Mix, dry Store in cool, dry place - use within 12-15 months.
Cheeses * * *
Salmon, Pink, cnd 72 36 18
Salmon, Pouches 72 36 18
Tuna, cnd 72 36 18
       
Group B      
Bakery Mix (reg. & lowfat) 12 6 3
Bulgur (cracked wheat) Store in cool, dry place - use within 4 months.
Flour, all types 24 12 6
Cornmeal 24 12 6
Grits, Corn 24 12 6
Milk, NFD (non-fat, dried) 24 12 3
Oats Rolled, Quick 24 12 6
Pasta Products 72 36 18
Rice, Brown At 36-40F - use in 6 months. At 50-70F use in 3 months.
Rice, Milled 48 24 12
Peanut Butter (reg. & red. fat) 36 18 9
Peanut Granules 60 24 12
Peanuts Roasted 60 24 12
Vegetable Shortening 48 24 12
Vegetable Oil 24 12 6
Salad Oil Dressing 24 12 6
Salad Dressing, Reduced Calorie 8 5 2
Wheat, Rolled, Quick 24 12 6
Honey** 48 24 12
Butter** Store for 30 days at 32-35F

* Processed American and Cheddar Cheese can be kept for 18 months at a constant 32F in its original package. After opening, it can be kept well wrapped at 30-35F for 3-4 weeks.

* Mozzarella Cheese can be frozen at 0F for one year in its original package. After opening, it can be kept well wrapped at 30-35F for 3-4 weeks.

* Lite Mozzarella Cheese is best used within 5 months when stored between 38-42F in its original package.

* Reduced Fat Cheddar Cheese is best if used within 5 months when stored below 40F in its original package.

** No longer Purchased (may have in inventory).


FROZEN FOODS

 

Group A 0° F or Below*
Fruit  
Apple Slices 18 months
Blackberries 18 months
Blueberries 18 months
Cherries 24 months
Orange Juice 24 months
Orange Juice, Single Service Cartons 9 months
Peaches 18 months
Peaches, Individual Cups 18 months
Strawberries, Sliced, IQF 15 months
Vegetables  
Beans, Green 12 months
Carrots 24 months
Corn 24 months
Corn, Cobbetts 9 months
Peas, Green 14 months
Potato, Oven Type 12 months
Potato, Rounds 12 months
Potato, Wedges 12 months
Sweet Potatoes 12 months
Meat/Meat Alternatives  
Beef, Ground, Bulk 9 months
Beef, Patties 100%, w/VPP & Lean 4 months
Beef Roasts 12 months
Chicken Parts, Cooked, Breaded 4 months
Chicken, Leg Quarters 8 months
Chicken, Cut Up 8 months
Chicken Meat, Cooked, Diced 6 months
Eggs, Whole 1 year
Ham, Cooked, Boneless 1-2 years
Pork, Ground 9 months
Pork, Sausage, Bulk 3 months
Pork, Sausage Patties 3 months
Salmon Nuggets 6 months
Turkey Burgers 4 months
Turkey, Ground 3 months
Turkey Ham 4 months
Turkey Roast 7 months
Turkey Sausage, Chubs 3 months
Turkey, Whole 9 months

* Store off the floor and away from walls to allow for circulation of cold air. Temperature changes shorten shelf life and speed deterioration.

For questions about this information, contact Antonio Ante (608) 266-3615