AVOID THROWING OUT FOODS
- FOOD AND GROCERY BUDGET TIPS -
-- Cut your food and grocery budget -- Strategies for low price shopping --
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9.1 AVOID THROWING OUT FOOD - FOOD AND GROCERY BUDGET TIPS
By Debi Drecksler
Don't you hate throwing out food? What a waste of money! Have you ever taken out a box out of the pantry and wondered if it was still edible? If the expiration date is not already stamped on a product, here is an easy tip for marking items:
Take a pen and label your food products with the date of purchase before you put them away.
For pantry items, write the date (for example, 6-97) on the box or the label of the can. For refrigerated or frozen items that are difficult to write on, such as a carton of ice cream, write on a piece of masking tape and stick it on the product.
Don't forget to store your food in order of date -- oldest date first. This way you will not discover an outdated product in the back of your panty two years from now.
After you have opened a product, it is always a good idea to label it again, especially if you transfer it to a storage container. Take a piece of masking tape, write the full-date (6-11-97), and stick it on the container. This will help you avoid having to throw out leftovers. Also label freshly prepared food that you keep in the refrigerator or freezer.
It is important to know how long a food product will remain fresh after it has been opened. Many companies now have toll-free numbers. To avoid having to call about the same product twice, write the information on an index card and tape it to the inside of your pantry. This tip is wonderful for products such as spices that can sit on a shelf for months, or long lasting refrigerated items such as condiments.
Non-food items such as toiletries should be labeled if you buy in quantity. Cosmetics have a limited shelf life once they have been opened. For example, many cosmetic companies suggest replacing mascara every few months. Tape an index card to the inside of your bathroom cabinet. Mark down the dates you open your cosmetics. Cleaning supplies also have a limited shelf life.
Women often buy hosiery in large quantities. Be careful not to store them for too long. The elastic will often disintegrate after a few years. Label your hosiery packages with the date of purchase.