The following is some very good information about dating on food that confuses many. The article linked to below has even more information about food storage and dating, both commercial and home, canned or not. VERY good!
"Deciphering Packaged Food Dates
"Storing Food for Safety and Quality, University of Idaho, PNW 612
"For most foods, product dating is not required by law. An exception is infant formula and some baby foods for which open dating is required. Open dates are calendar dates that are clearly understood by consumers, as opposed to coded dates that are sometimes used by food manufacturers for their own tracking. Infant and baby foods are dated for nutrient retention as well as quality, since these foods often provide the sole source of nutrition. Do not buy or use infant formula or baby food after its “use by” date.
"Many food manufacturers choose to label packaged foods with some type of date. However, there is no universal system for expressing the date. Commonly used date terminology is explained below. These dates are not related to product safety.
"Date of pack or manufacture. Refers to when the food was packed or processed for sale. These are not “use by” dates. Instead, they are printed on canned or boxed goods that are shelf-stable items to identify and locate products if there is a recall.
"Freshness, pull, or “sell by” date. Tells the store how long to display the product for sale. The date allows for home storage and use within a reasonable period of time, as predicted by the manufacturer. The product maybe safely consumed after the sell-by date. Often used on breads, baked goods, and dairy products.
“Use before” or “Best if used by” date. Gives the recommended shelf life for best flavor or quality. The food can be safely used past this date. Often used with frozen foods, fried snack foods such as chips and crackers, cereals, canned foods, pasta and rice.
Expiration date. The last day the product should be used for best quality. Yeast and baking powder have expiration dates.
"Home dating. It is a good practice to mark the date on purchased foods that do not have open dates and that you plan to store for an extended time. Likewise, marking the date on stored home-prepared foods or leftovers is the best way to keep track of stored food. Keep a marker or pen and small self-stick labels handy, and date these foods when you put them into storage." (--this is a good idea to do with any food put in your fridge or freezer--L. Watts)
A little history for you. . . I was looking at stuff on the net and I looked up the word "canning" and came up with the Wikipedia article below.
Make sure you at least read the FIRST paragraph. It mentioned some canned food over 100 years old; it was still edible and not poisonous, though not the most nutritious or tasty.
And here are a couple more on-line articles for some more history:
Finally, here is a .pdf article on recommended methods of Canning and some info on some methods to avoid:
- Author: Darrell Fluman
- Editor: L. Watts
THE ILLINOIS CHERRY STONER
Patented April 9, 1867 by George Geer, Galesburg, Ill.
It is cherry season again and I wanted to highlight an historical cherry processing item.
George Geer's patent for his Illinois Cherry Stoner was issued on April 9th, 1867.
This is the first manufactured cherry stoner to use prongs to “stab” the seeds from the cherries leaving them intact with minimal damage.
There were earlier cherry stoners, Patented in 1859 and 1863, that used a spinning disc to rub the seed from the cherries, but left a mangled mass of partial cherries. Fine for jams, jellies and other preserves, but not pretty.
It is a table top, clamp-on model that removes the pits from cherries two at a time.
Equipped with a grooved wood tray to help feed the cherries into the circular depressions in the tray, the barbed prongs would press the pits through the bottom of the cherries into a small bowl and the steel plate would scrape the pitted cherries from the prongs on the return.
The cherries then roll down the wood ramp into another bowl.
This invention was thought to be so important that it was featured on the front cover of Scientific American in 1868.
Just one look at the expression on the face of the woman operating the Illinois Cherry Stoner gives you some idea as to the utter joy provided to the housewife of the day by this new fangled gadget.
At some point George Geer sold or assigned his patent rights to David Goodell of Antrim, N.H. who then modified the cherry stoner to include a cast iron tray and frame.
Pictured here in a 1918 Shapleigh Hardware catalog, it wholesaled @ $9.50 per dozen.
The description includes the instructions to:
“Drop Cherries in Hopper with Left Hand and Operate with Right Hand.”
“Capacity About Six Quarts per Hour; Removes Seeds from Two Cherries at a Time”
Goodell Co. marketed and sold this model as The Family Cherry Stoner for another 50-60 years.
These are very common and readily available in the marketplace today.
David Goodell manufactured a wide range of kitchen appliances to include more than a dozen different small apple parers, sectioners, cherry pitters, and several commercial apple parers all of which are highly collectable.
IT'S ON THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW! WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19th.
REMEMBER THERE IS A NEW LOCATION! - Highland Branch Library, 7863 Central Ave., Highland, CA 92346.
Save your spot now. Yes, you out there, save that spot.