Is that old food safe to eat? Quick tips on what's ok and what's not

Past expiration dates? Fuzzy berries? Old leftovers? Some of it can be eaten, the rest not so much.

Expiration dateIn a place where we throw out 133 billion pounds of food out every year, those of us in the United States might be seen as a bit over-eager when it comes to tossing our edibles. And although it's a tragedy, especially given that so many people in this world have so little to eat, I can see how we got here. Among other things, food is cheap and abundant; marketers and the media promote beautiful picture-perfect food, seducing us into buying too much and trashing it once it's less than flawless; and this one's hard to deny – most of us know the abysmal consequences of foodborne illness.

Fortunately, there are wafts of change in the air. Ugly fruits and vegetables are the new supermarket darlings; people are becoming more aware of food waste; and more of us are learning that older foods can be revived or used in delicious ways.

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