Morrisons is to get rid of the ‘use-by’ dates on most of its milk range to help cut down on food waste.
The food label will be replaced by ‘best-before’ dates on 90 per cent of its own-brand milk, as well as encouraging customers to use a sniff test to check quality.
The move will be introduced at the end of January with the supermarket hoping it will stop millions of pints of milk being thrown away every year.
Morrisons says it was taking the bold step to help support both farmers and climate change.
Senior milk buyer Ian Goode said: “Wasted milk means wasted effort by our farmers and unnecessary carbon being released into the atmosphere.
“Good quality well-kept milk has a good few days left after normal ‘use-by’ dates – and we think it should be consumed, not tipped down the sink.”
He added: “Generations before us have always used the sniff test – and I believe we can too.”
The UK’s Food Standard Agency website states use-by dates relate to the food’s safety whilst the best-before dates relate to food quality.
It warns not to trust the sniff test, explaining whilst food can “look and smell fine” after its use-by date, that doesn’t mean it’s “safe to eat as it could still be contaminated”.
“You cannot see, smell or taste the bacteria that cause food poisoning,” the website reads.
Recycling charity Wrap has welcomed the move adding Morrisons is the first supermarket to introduce the change.
It estimates milk is the third most wasted food and drink product in the UK, after potatoes and bread, with some 490 pints wasted each year.
The charity also approximates 85 million pints may be wasted due to customers following ‘use-by’ label.
CEO Marcus Gover said: “I am delighted that Morrisons is the first UK supermarket to take this important step to help reduce household food waste – it shows real leadership and we look forward to more retailers reviewing date labels on their products and taking action.”