Denmark’s shops told they can sell outdated food

Danish food administrators DVFA have altered its regulations so the country’s stores no longer have to take products off the shelves after the ‘best before’ date has been exceeded.

Consumer advisor Camilla Udsen explained that food was fine to be eaten after the ‘best before’ date so long as it had been stored properly and had not been opened. She said that before now if the date had been past, stores were not permitted to sell a product.

DVFA changed the rules at the beginning of the year to bring Denmark in line with labelling regulations across the EU.

Udsen noted that if the rule change meant Denmark’s stores would no longer be binning perfectly good food, it was a good thing. However, she insisted that stores had a responsibility to ensure the products remained good and the fact the expiration date had been exceeded was clearly labelled.

Udsen also pointed out that the new rule only concerned the ‘best before’ date and not the ‘use by’ date. Products that have past the latter must be thrown out.

However, Denmark’s two largest wholesalers, Dansk Supermarked and Coop, did not approve of the new regulations.

Coop quality manager Karin Froidt said that they did not want anything to do with the change as they always aimed to provide their customers with fresh products and ensure they had a good experience. She noted that the store was known for lowering prices as goods neared their ‘best before’ date, which had helped reduce waste by 25 per cent.