Storing milk in the refrigerator door might seem like a no-brainer, with a perfectly sized ledge here on many models.
But experts warn that we’re actually shortening shelf life, with milk that belongs much further in.
Twitter has been awash with confusion this week about the proper way to store our staple dairy product.
It follows farmer Ceri Cryer’s appearance on BBC Breakfast, where she surprised viewers by urging them to store milk in a completely different place.
“You have to make sure that if you take it home after you buy it, you keep it cold and put it with other cold products,” she told the show.
Turns out, storing milk in the refrigerator door can shorten its shelf life, since it’s the warmest place
WHERE DO YOU STORE MAYONNAISE AND KETCHUP?
Dr. Christian Reynolds claims this can vary based on your location.
If you live in a warmer country like Australia, you might want to consider refrigerating this.
But some products are also very “shelf-stable,” meaning they’re safe to consume after being refrigerated.
Dr. Reynolds recommends that consumers refer to the back of the label for the best advice.
“You have to put it in the back of the fridge in the largest part of the fridge and not in the front of the fridge, in the fridge door, the hottest part of the fridge.”
“And when you finish your milk, cap it right away and put it back in the driveway as soon as possible, and don’t drink from the bottle.”
Countless people expressed disbelief at this, suggesting that they don’t have the space to keep it on a lower, deeper shelf.
“Where else to put it?!” said one Twitter user.
“They’re too long to fit on shelves and you can’t put them down once they’re open!”
Another added: “This is shocking news. I now question everything about refrigerator design. You’re about to tell me not to use the egg holder that came with it.’
But scientists have since supported Ms Cryer’s view, adding that cheese, yogurt and other dairy products should also be stored deeper down.
Dr. Christian Reynolds, from the City University of London, told MailOnline: ‘Milk is a perishable commodity, so where you store it and the temperature at which you keep it in the fridge will affect its shelf life.
‘It’s not just milk either, think of cheese, meat and all dairy products. By storing it correctly, you get more value for money.’
Storing milk in the bottom of a refrigerator in the back can extend its shelf life by two days
Twitter has been bombarded with confusion about the proper way to store our base product
Overstocking warnings come at a time when about 490 million liters of milk are being dumped down the sink every year, according to the Confidence in sustainable food.
While it is clear that milk can be used much sooner than it should be, this is also caused by consumers throwing it away too quickly.
The confusion is often centered around the best before date, which generally indicates that a product is no longer safe to consume.
But just this week, M&S along with many supermarkets removed these labels in the belief that an old-fashioned sniff test is a better way to judge.
The change was driven by research projects, such as Dr. Reynolds, who want to help Britons use their food better.
“We have this thing called the Household Simulation Model that looks at the date five to six years from now, looking at how people use milk,” he said.
‘Somewhere between 30 and 60 percent don’t participate, they just look at the milk and throw it away. They often don’t see the difference between expiration date and expiration date.’
Still, he also advises consumers to check that their fridge is set between 0-5°C (32-41°F) to get the most out of produce.
“If your refrigerator is below 5°C (41°F), you can extend the shelf life by one to days,” continued Dr. Reynolds.
‘You can freeze cheese and milk, so that it also has a longer shelf life. It’s not just that you put it in the right place, it’s that it’s smart.”
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ‘TO USE’ AND ‘TEST BY’ DATE?
SAFETY EXPIRY DATE
The Food Standards Agency warns that food should never be eaten after its best before date because it can make you sick.
You can eat the product until midnight of the day indicated on the label, but not after that.
THT DATA RELATE TO QUALITY
You can eat food past its expiration date, but it may not be of the same quality.
This label can be found on the packaging of many food products such as cheese, dried foods and preserves.