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Kroger yesterday announced that it plans to "standardize date labels for Our Brands food products, providing simpler, easier-to-understand product quality and safety information as part of its Zero Hunger | Zero Waste social impact commitment."

Howard Popoola, Kroger's vice president of corporate food technology and regulatory compliance, explains: "Kroger recognizes food waste often takes place in our customers' kitchens simply because product date labels can be confusing, resulting in safe-to-eat food regularly being tossed out. As Kroger works to reduce food waste throughout our business and our communities, we are standardizing and simplifying Our Brands products' date labels, providing clearer guidance to our customers."

Kroger is transitioning its Our Brands food products to feature one of the following date labels:

• "Use By" is used to represent food safety. If a customer reads "use by" followed by a date, it indicates the deadline for when it is no longer safe to eat.

• "Best if Used By" is used to represent food quality. If a customer reads "best if used by" followed by a date, it indicates the deadline for guaranteed freshness but does not affect the product's safety.

The simplified labels will apply to multiple product categories, including dairy, deli, bakery, and fresh and frozen grocery.
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