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Oldest food

My parents were in the habit of purchase dates on things they bought to ensure stock was rotated as best before and use by dates didn't exist then. I use to do the same.

As part of a tidy up at the bottom end of my under the stairs cupboard ( the low bit that's very hard to reach into) I have found a 1kg bag of sugar which I purchased on 8 August 1994. I don't use much sugar so it may see its 30th birthday, who knows :)

Comments

  • Nelliegrace
    Nelliegrace Posts: 482 Forumite
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    How ever did we survive before tinned food had dates on them? 
  • bouicca21
    bouicca21 Posts: 6,511 Forumite
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    edited 29 March 2023 at 7:29AM
    How ever did we survive before tinned food had dates on them? 
    Oh that one is easy!  We looked to see if the tin was blown.

    does sugar go off?  Isn’t it a preservative?
  • Sarahspangles
    Sarahspangles Posts: 1,292 Forumite
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    I don’t think there’s anything in white sugar that can go off, it’s made of molecules of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.  It could spoil if it’s got damp, or be contaminated.  If I had an old bag hanging about I might make toffee or something like that as being molten would kill anything that had moved in!
  • London_1
    London_1 Posts: 1,570 Forumite
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    How ever did we survive before tinned food had dates on them? 
    In our house, because of wartime rationing if it didn't actually move on the plate it got eaten. What didn't go in the kids ended up in the dog .We were made of strong stuff back then :) plus my late Mum had a jolly good sniff first, if it passed her smell test then it was used.
    Not that we had much in the way of tinned stuff anyway apart from maybe spam or corned beef, and as stated if the tin wasn't blown then no reason not to use it up. but of course there was the fact we didn't have the coupons or money to store vast amounts of food as we all do today.

     I am just as guilty.Growing up with so many shortages in post -war austerity you learned to always try to keep a small amount of tinned stuff "just in case' :) 

    My two DDs think my kitchen cupboards look like I'm awaitng the third world war or an apocalyse :) as its a rare sight to see one even three quarters full.

    I have though, since Christmas because of being in  hospital, and being confined indoors because of auto-immunity risks been glad that I had full cupboards, and haven't actually been shopping for food since before Christmas ,and I am slowly eating my way through the dried food and tinned stocks. My two DDs get anything fresh I need bread,milk, fruit veg etc so I haven't gone hungry. I still have a good few things to go before my cupboards even start to get any room in them.My freezer is about three quarters full still as well
    :):):) 

    still food bills are fairly low at least 

    JackieO xx
  • GaleSF63
    GaleSF63 Posts: 1,535 Forumite
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    Dated - Marmite, 2007. It will last for ever. Undated - herbs/spices, some will be back to the nineties. Cloves bought in 2001 for sticking in oranges and left over... I might just do that now I've been reminded, but it's awfully hard on the finger tips. 
  • theoretica
    theoretica Posts: 12,275 Forumite
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    edited 29 March 2023 at 11:58AM
    Baking powder - just stopped working.
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 10,186 Forumite
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    I don’t think there’s anything in white sugar that can go off, it’s made of molecules of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.  It could spoil if it’s got damp, or be contaminated.  If I had an old bag hanging about I might make toffee or something like that as being molten would kill anything that had moved in!
    And protein is just C, H, O and Nitrogen but that doesnt mean you want to eat a 10 year old steak you find down the back of the fridge!

    Sugar, like salt, has dehydration properties (hence why both are used to cure things) making both almost impossible for any microbes to live on it and flurish. 

    GaleSF63 said:
    Undated - herbs/spices, some will be back to the nineties. Cloves bought in 2001 for sticking in oranges and left over... I might just do that now I've been reminded, but it's awfully hard on the finger tips. 
    Surprised they are undated, my mother had some that were dated to be older than me when I was growing up. 

    Whilst they dont go off they certainly do lose their potency. You may smell the 22 year old cloves and think they still smell like cloves but if you compare that with a fresh pot a large proportion of the scent and taste have been lost to time. With some of my mothers old dried herbs you were just putting dust into your food. 



    We move house too often to have anything lost in backs of cupboards etc and so dont have much thats very old. Possible exception is black treacle/golden syrup which again due to sugar content wont go off and are used to rarely in the foods we make that a tin easily lasts over a decade. 
  • GaleSF63
    GaleSF63 Posts: 1,535 Forumite
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    GaleSF63 said:
    Undated - herbs/spices, some will be back to the nineties. Cloves bought in 2001 for sticking in oranges and left over... I might just do that now I've been reminded, but it's awfully hard on the finger tips. 
    Surprised they are undated, my mother had some that were dated to be older than me when I was growing up. 

    Whilst they dont go off they certainly do lose their potency. You may smell the 22 year old cloves and think they still smell like cloves but if you compare that with a fresh pot a large proportion of the scent and taste have been lost to time. With some of my mothers old dried herbs you were just putting dust into your food. 



    We move house too often to have anything lost in backs of cupboards etc and so dont have much thats very old. Possible exception is black treacle/golden syrup which again due to sugar content wont go off and are used to rarely in the foods we make that a tin easily lasts over a decade. 
    I think they are just undated because they aren't all in their original packaging or the date has worn off. I've thrown some out over the years because they've lost their flavour but some are ok and some I just haven't checked. Powdered ginger for example is fine - cinnamon - ugh, like eating dust! The cloves seem to be ok as well - I use them in apple sauce.
    Same here with the black treacle - used once a year for Christmas pudding. 
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 10,186 Forumite
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    GaleSF63 said:

    GaleSF63 said:
    Undated - herbs/spices, some will be back to the nineties. Cloves bought in 2001 for sticking in oranges and left over... I might just do that now I've been reminded, but it's awfully hard on the finger tips. 
    Surprised they are undated, my mother had some that were dated to be older than me when I was growing up. 

    Whilst they dont go off they certainly do lose their potency. You may smell the 22 year old cloves and think they still smell like cloves but if you compare that with a fresh pot a large proportion of the scent and taste have been lost to time. With some of my mothers old dried herbs you were just putting dust into your food. 



    We move house too often to have anything lost in backs of cupboards etc and so dont have much thats very old. Possible exception is black treacle/golden syrup which again due to sugar content wont go off and are used to rarely in the foods we make that a tin easily lasts over a decade. 
    I think they are just undated because they aren't all in their original packaging or the date has worn off. I've thrown some out over the years because they've lost their flavour but some are ok and some I just haven't checked. Powdered ginger for example is fine - cinnamon - ugh, like eating dust! The cloves seem to be ok as well - I use them in apple sauce.
    Same here with the black treacle - used once a year for Christmas pudding. 
    Obviously not tried your powered ginger, just can say for our own it seemed ok until we had some fresh at which point it became evident how much it had lost... guess its similar to the whole "nose blind" thing when you dont have a comparison its ok.

    I've a bread recipe that is my only use for black treacle, its too good though and a loaf goes within a couple of hours so can only be made very occasionally. 
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