January 10, 2009

Retailer thrives selling outdated food

An English company specializing in selling food past its best-before date says it has seen its sales rise exponentially since the global economic downturn.

Approved Food says its sales have shot up 10-fold, and business is so strong the online retailer has to shut down its Web site for two days a month to clear order backlogs,The Daily Telegraph reported Saturday.

We have seen a significant rise in interest, probably due to the credit crunch and our low price, said company founder Dan Cluderay.

The newspaper said Approved Food sells 26.4-ounce jars of Nutella chocolate and hazelnut spread with a best-before date of Jan. 4 for $1.56, while the same products sells in Tesco stores for nearly $3.90.

Most products past their best-before date are still safe to eat, the Food Standards Agency said.

Best before is an indication of quality rather than safety. Eating food past the best-before date does not necessarily put someone at risk from food poisoning, a spokesman said.