I have some golden syrup in a plastic bottle, all looks normal. It has a best before date Feb 2010. Is it still ok to feed to kids on pancake day February 2015??

  • Hello and welcome to the site! Could you please clarify: what kids are you talking about? Your own or other children? – Stephie Feb 16 '15 at 21:47
  • Does that really matter @Stephie? – GdD Feb 17 '15 at 8:43
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    Yes it does. While I might choose to ignore some food safety recommendations when serving food for my family because - after careful consideration - I find them overly cautious, other rules apply when serving food publicly, e.g. to a youth group, at summer camp or to my childrens' class mates. This has little to do with actual safety (none of us would willingly risk the health if others, right?), but a lot with legal ramifications and potentially over-zealous lawyers. Especially when food is sold, strict adherence to any regulation is recommended. – Stephie Feb 17 '15 at 9:31
  • Since "Pancake Day" implies a large group event (rather than just breakfast at home), it was worth asking. Nice catch @Stephie. – Erica Feb 17 '15 at 13:15
  • Duplicate as far as the spoil-or-not-spoil question goes, but the implications of serving to others (especially kids, possibly in public) are not part of the other post. – Stephie Feb 17 '15 at 20:17

A best before date does not specify how long a food item will last. It merely gives a time frame within which an optimum quality can be assumed ( as given by the manufacturer).

Food does not automatically spoil after the best before date, so use common sense.

My gut feeling with golden syrup would be that it's fine unless a change in smell, consistency, color.... can be noticed. That stuff is so high in sugar, that bacteria would really have a hard time there. At my last move, I unearthed a few forgotten bottles of elderberry blossom syrup from (I'd better not tell here), that are still perfectly fine... I tried.

But: If you are planning to serve your syrup outside your family, that is, to kids that aren't your kids, other rules concerning food safety may apply. Check with your local authorities or play it safe and get a new bottle.

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  • Mine and other kids. I guess I just wanted to check it didn't have any chemical properties in it that, after time, turned into a poisonous cocktail! Common sense tells me it's fine...but common sense can sometimes be misleading!! Thank you for the response – Pancake Girl Feb 16 '15 at 22:01

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