Morrisons in Sheffield to scrap 'use by' dates on milk and replace with 'sniff test'

Bosses at Morrisons have decided to scrap ‘use by’ dates on most of their milk products in a bid to reduce waste.

Monday, 10th January 2022, 12:14 pm

The supermarket says it will be replacing them with ‘best before’ dates from the end of January for 90 per cent of its products, and is encouraging customers to instead use a ‘sniff test’ to check the quality.

The move is in a bid to cut down on food waste and to stop millions of pints of milk being thrown away each year.

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Morrisons has said it will scrap 'use by' dates on most of its milk and is encouraging customers to use a 'sniff test' instead to check if the product is still edible, in a bid to reduce waste. Photo by Morrisons.

Ian Goode, senior milk buyer at Morrisons, said: “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.

“So, we’re taking a bold step today and asking customers to decide whether their milk is still good to drink.

“Generations before us have always used the sniff test – and I believe we can too.”

When checking if the milk is still ingestible, customers should check for a sour smell or curdled consistency – signs the milk has gone off.

According to recycling charity Wrap, Morrisons is the first supermarket to make the change.

Milk is the third most wasted food and drink product in the UK, after potatoes and bread, with around 490 million pints wasted every year, according to Wrap.

It also estimates 85 million pints of milk waste may be due to customers following “use by” labels despite research showing it can be used days after the date.

It comes after Sheffield was named the third worst city in the UK for food waste with an average of £10 of goods going in the bin each week.

Appliance group Haier claimed out of a snapshot of 700 people from Sheffield, nearly six in 10 owned up to chucking away one to three items of food at the end of the week.

Marcus Gover, of Wrap, said: “I am delighted that Morrisons is the first UK supermarket to take this important step to help reduce household food waste – it shows real leadership and we look forward to more retailers reviewing date labels on their products and taking action.”