John Bailey

Are these items really expired?

Are these items really expired?

There are telltale signs that a product has gone bad. Moldy bread. Clumpy milk. The layer of fur blanketing the cream cheese. But what about the toothpaste sitting in your pantry for years after a zealous bulk purchase? Or those condoms waiting optimistically in your nightstand for longer than you wish you recall?

Many such products carry expiration dates, but thrifty shoppers often wonder if they really must toss dated items that still "seem" perfectly fine. After all, how can headache medicine stop working from one month to the next? And why should you believe the expiration date on one lotion when another doesn't carry one at all?

The Food and Drug...