“Best By” & “MFG” Dates
In an effort to simplify the various industry standard LOT/DATE imprinting methods, we would like to explain how you should interpret our LOT/DATE stamps. We use both “Best By” and “MFG DATE” [Date of Manufacture] on our finished products.
Q. What is the “Best By” date that is printed on our dietary supplements?
A. “The Best By” date refers to the date recommended that you use the product “by” for best physical and/or sensory quality. It is not an expiration date, but rather the date by which we recommend consumption.
Q. If a product is past the “Best By” date, does this mean that I shouldn’t consume the product?
A. Not necessarily. Although the product is past our recommended consumption date, if it still maintains good sensory and quality characteristics, you may decide to continue consumption. Your decision should depend on several factors, including how the product has been stored in your home and whether or not the product is discolored, rancid, or noticeably changed. For example, if the product was refrigerated, or kept in a cool dry place, and looks and smells normal this may allow for consumption after the “Best By” date. If any signs of degradation are evident it’s best to discard the product.
Q. How should I best store my products?
A. Always refer to the product label first for any special storage conditions. Generally speaking, dietary supplements are foods and should be stored like foods. Cool, dry conditions are best; and refrigeration may extend product life. Hot and/or humid conditions, such as those found in bathrooms and kitchens, may shorten product life.
Q. What about opening and closing the bottle?
A. The “Best By” date takes into account normal daily usage. Recommended best practices are to open the bottle, remove the exact amount of product you wish to consume, and then close the lid tightly. If consuming the product more than once a day, try to remove the total amount needed for the day at one time. Make sure to tightly close the lid after each use.
Q. What is the difference between “Best By” and “MFG DATE”?
A. Instead of calculating a particular date every time we produce product lots, we simply provide the “MFG DATE” [Manufacturing Date] of when it was made. This provides a “hard” date for the consumer.
Q. So, how long is our product “good” for then, or, when does it expire if it has a “MFG DATE” imprinted on the package?
A. We generally recommend consumption within 3 years of the manufacture date. You may decide to continue consumption after that time (please see above example: If a product is past the “Best By” date). As with the “Best By” dating method, this also takes into account “normal daily usage” as described above.