Were you aware that milk is the third most-wasted food in British households? According to food waste charity Wrap, around 330,000 tonnes of milk are thrown out in the UK each year. But the worst part is that most people discard their milk before it’s actually spoiled. And we have the use-by-dates on milk packaging to blame for that.
In an attempt to reduce household waste in the UK, Morrisons has decided to discontinue printing use-by-dates on their milk packaging. Ian Goode, who is a senior milk buyer at the supermarket company explained that milk that has been stored in a cool environment, and has been closed well, can last a few days longer than what is written on the packaging. He said, as quoted by The Independent:
Wasted milk means wasted effort by our farmers and unnecessary carbon being released into the atmosphere.
Good quality well-kept milk has a good few days life after normal ‘use by’ dates - and we think it should be consumed, not tipped down the sink.
At the end of January 2022, Morrisons’ customers will no longer be able to see use-by-dates when buying 90% of the supermarket’s own-brand milks, reported The Guardian. This includes their British and Scottish milks, Morrisons For Farmers milks, and Morrisons organic milks.
How can you check if your milk has gone bad?
Fortunately, the company has not left their customers to their own devices and has recommended them to do a ‘sniff test’ to check if their milk has gone sour. This simply means that you take a whiff of the milk to see whether it has a sour smell—if it does, then you can’t drink it anymore. Goode added:
Generations before us have always used the sniff test – and I believe we can too.
You should also observe the texture and colour of the milk to decipher whether or not its good to use. Healthline explains that if it's lumpy and slightly yellow-looking then it's probably past its real use-by-date.
If you want to make sure your milk lasts longer then Dairy Farmers of Canada, a farmer-run organisation, suggests that you store your milk bottle or carton in a cooler area in your fridge. They wrote on their website:
Store milk on refrigerator shelves, where it's cooler, rather than in the refrigerator doors, which tend to be warmer.