Business food and drink

Sell by dates taken to the extreme

activa yoghurt sell by date

Activia yoghurt introduce very precise sell by dates. Ya gotta laugh innit. I was just polishing off this peach flavoured Activia, eaten in tandem with a medley of both fresh and tinned peaches with fresh ripe mango (for the foodies amongst us) and for some reason it occurred to me to look at the sell by date. Might be the use by date. Not sure.

Doesn’t matter really. Sell by or use by, it was sufficiently far into the future to give me confidence that no bodily harm would come to me having consumed the pot. Tasty it was too.

Then I noticed that not only had Activia provided a sell by/use by date but they had included a very precise time on that day by which the yoghurt would have to be sold/used. This degree of attention to detail and the customer’s well being is laudible but must surely lead to confusion in the aisles of supermarkets up and down the country. At eight minutes to seven the yoghurt is ok but one minute later and you had better look out pardner. “Health and Safety” would be up in arms, on your back.

I also note that Activia, in English, likes to spell yoghurt yogurt. My standard way of checking a spelling is to enter the word in the google search bar to see what comes up. On this occasion both yog and yogh seemed to be ok although WordPress would appear to disapprove of yog. This seems unusual to me because having originated in the good ole US of A I’d have expected WordPress to go for the simple spelling aka plow, color et al.

Reading Activia labels can also be very educating. In this instance for example we can see that translations of peach are peche and perzik. I leave it to you to decide on the languages. Choosing incorrectly could lead to embarrassing mistakes caused by not being understood by waiters and shop assistants in countries around the globe.

Notwithstanding all of this the yo’ghurt I consumed was the last in the fridge and we are unlikely to have to face up to “the date” as an issue.Based on this sample size of one I’d say Activia yogs fly off the shelves making me think that the only reason they have “a date” on them at all is that bloke in H&S again.

I quite liked my Activia. It went well with the fruit medley and is a handy, easy to throw together dessert for the busy exec looking to squeeze in a quality meal between emails and blog posts.

Other yoghurts are available. This post was brought to you by Activia, Yeo Valley, Danone, Actimel, Shape, Muller, Yoplait, Nestle, Yakult and the Heathrow Eggs and Dairy Company.

Ciao amigos. Drink more milk.

Trefor Davies

By Trefor Davies

Liver of life, father of four, CTO of, writer, poet,

6 replies on “Sell by dates taken to the extreme”

Obviously there is no good reason to specify the use/sell by date to the nearest second. However, the manufacturer would find it useful to know when the product was manufactured & packaged. Specifying this to the nearest second simplifies allocation of blame if there is a problem (can’t’ve been me guv cos I was on my tea break then). Unfortunately this would mean that your yoghurt was manufactured almost a year ago (on a midsummer’s evening). But if it smelled and tasted ok then I wouldn’t worry 🙂

I hear they have discovered stone age pots of yoghurt kept fresh in the frozen Siberian tundra that have been perfectly edible. Assuming you like mammoth flavour yoghurt that is.

I believe the time shown here is the time of manufacture with the associated batch number below. In the case of any issues, the manufacturer can trace back to batches and even sections of batches based on time to pinpoint any potential issue.

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