SHROPSHIRE. The sell-by dates on food products can be safely extended by around two weeks, a student claimed today. Liam Madden, 20, who is studying Astrophysics with Golf Course Management at the University of Shropshire, insisted that the suggested dates were “proper cautious” and that other factors could be used to determine food edibility.

Mouldy food

“Those dates really don’t mean anything”, Madden explained to flatmates earlier today, while tucking into a sandwich of week old bacon on two-week old bread, topped off with two-year old ketchup. “They’re just being proper cautious because they can’t cut it fine. In reality, you can just add a couple of weeks on and you’ll probably be fine. Sometimes more than that, sometimes less. It’s a judgement call.”

When challenged by disgusted flatmate Anna Jones, 19, if he was then simply planning to leave food festering in the fridge forever, Madden suggested that other proofing methods can be employed to determine if food is safe to eat. “Furriness is the obvious one”, Madden explained. “Most food that doesn’t start out furry shouldn’t become furry with time. Watch out too for things that randomly change colour, texture, start soft and get hard, start hard and get soft, or just generally smell unpleasant. “

Madden did concede, however, that some food simply has to be thrown away. “Even in these tough economic times, a line has to be drawn somewhere. It’s up to each man to determine where that line is for himself.”

Photo credit: Henning Mühlinghaus, via Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0