Unparsable expiration date



  • I found some old pre-packaged ground coffee in my fridge--I think I inherited it from my mom when she gave me her old coffee maker. It's from the American Dunkin Donuts coffee shop chain. So, I want to know if it's expired yet. Anyone care to defend whoever designed this useless label?

    For those of you not browsing with images, the characters clearly say "USE BY 06 08 04." I couldn't tell you what it means though. Might as well be written in hex. Hell, maybe that is hex.



  • June 4, 2004? Or August 6, 2004? Either way, just toss it. [:D]

     

    (or it could be 2006, August 04 I guess)



  • Well it's obviously a date, and since almost all standard date formats (mm-dd-yy, dd-mm-yy, dd-mm-yyyy, mm-dd-yyyy) end in year, I would assume that it's expired.  And when I say "expired", I mean it was expired two years ago.



  • It reminds me of a question from the "Straight Dope:"

    <!--StartFragment --><FONT face=Arial> </FONT><FONT face=Arial>I'm troubled by the expiration date on the enclosed M&M wrapper. As you can see, it says:

    19 DEC 88
    805 AM

    My question is, what happens at 8:06? --Barry M., Chicago</FONT>


    Answer here: http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a3_112.html


  • DD is mostly sold in the US.  The official US format is mm/dd/yy.  So June 8, 2004.



  • I've seen my share of dates presented in YY MM DD format. If you're going to organize log files, for example, that's the best way to do it. You don't want the months first, or you'll see all the log files from January grouped together at the top, regardless of the year. Or some companies want to provide dates that don't conform to the MM-DD-YY or DD-MM-YY format, so they throw this curveball of putting the year first.

    Plus, this is coffee, so it doesn't exactly have a short lifespan. I've used coffee that was several years old without a problem, so it's quite possible that this expires in 2006 (either on August 4th or April 8th - either way you have plenty of time).

    But if you are still unsure, I say to toss it because: A) it was free, and B) it looks like one of those trial size things that would cost you $0.99 to buy a fresh one at any coffee shop.



  • <font size="2">Hmm, is that really a space between the 8 and the following 0?  I'm going to say it expired in June of the year 804.



    </font>



  • @Manni said:

    Plus, this is coffee, so it doesn't exactly have a short lifespan.

    Wrong. Ground coffee has a very short lifespan unless kept in closed vacuum pack. The essential oils vaporise and the remains are oxidiced, leaving the coffee bitter and flat-tasting. This process is slowed if the coffee is kept under lid. Coffee beans have a smaller surface-to-volume ratio, causing the process to go even slower. Still, after roasting, coffee beans are good for about two-three weeks, ground coffee in paper bags are good for about a week. The same goes for opened vacuum packs.

    @Manni said:

    I've used coffee that was several years old without a problem, so it's quite possible that this expires in 2006 (either on August 4th or April 8th - either way you have plenty of time).

    He'd be better off buying some new coffee. Even if he wont croak from drinking that stuff, it's not going to be a pleasant experience.



  • Let's not forget, this is Dunkin Donuts coffee. It's probably bad enough that either:

    a. The expiration date is irrelevant because the consumer would obviously drink anything posing as coffee

    or

    b. The expriation date is irrelevant because a person who worried about how it tastes would not drink this brand anyway.

    I vote for April 8 2008 ( DD YY MM ). That would be the most fun date format.But I would chuck it anyway :-)



  • Might as well be written in hex. Hell, maybe that is hex.


    Yeah, I think it's in hex.
    But I can't work out what hex 06, 08 or 04 would be in decimal, could somebody help me?




    </sarcasm>



  • well, it's obviously expired.
    Whichever field represents the year it will be 2000 years past that, give or take 2 years [;)]



  • @maldrich said:

    The expiration date is irrelevant because the consumer would obviously drink anything posing as coffee


    [Int. Donut Bar]
    <font size="2">BEVERAGE</font>: "I am coffee! Really! Drink me!"


    PS.
    This is the first time I've found the courage to use the formatting interface, in FFX.

    Consider it another test.



  • @Albatross said:

    Well it's obviously a date, and since almost
    all standard date formats (mm-dd-yy, dd-mm-yy, dd-mm-yyyy, mm-dd-yyyy)
    end in year, I would assume that it's expired.  And when I say
    "expired", I mean it was expired two years ago.




    Actually the standard (as in ISO standard, 8601 to be exact) format is YYYY-MM-DD.



  • @welcor said:

    @Manni said:

    Plus, this is coffee, so it doesn't exactly have a short lifespan.

    Wrong. Ground coffee has a very short lifespan unless kept in closed vacuum pack. The essential oils vaporise and the remains are oxidiced, leaving the coffee bitter and flat-tasting. This process is slowed if the coffee is kept under lid. Coffee beans have a smaller surface-to-volume ratio, causing the process to go even slower. Still, after roasting, coffee beans are good for about two-three weeks, ground coffee in paper bags are good for about a week. The same goes for opened vacuum packs.

    @Manni said:

    I've used coffee that was several years old without a problem, so it's quite possible that this expires in 2006 (either on August 4th or April 8th - either way you have plenty of time).

    He'd be better off buying some new coffee. Even if he wont croak from drinking that stuff, it's not going to be a pleasant experience.



    It looks to me like the coffe is still in an unopened vacuum pack.  What's the lifespan of unopened, vacuum-sealed, ground coffee?


  • <font style="font-family: verdana;" size="1">[quote
    user="UncleMidriff"]It looks to me like the coffe is still in an
    unopened vacuum pack.  What's the lifespan of unopened,
    vacuum-sealed, ground coffee?

    [/quote]



    <font size="2">Somewhere between Twinkie and MRE.



    </font>
    </font>



  • @welcor said:

    @Manni said:

    Plus, this is coffee, so it doesn't exactly have a short lifespan.

    Wrong.

     ...

    @Manni said:

    I've used coffee that was several years old without a problem, so it's quite possible that this expires in 2006 (either on August 4th or April 8th - either way you have plenty of time).

    He'd be better off buying some new coffee. Even if he wont croak from drinking that stuff, it's not going to be a pleasant experience.

    Thanks for the science lesson Juan Valdez. Are you for real? You sound like you're disagreeing with me (the word "wrong" kinda led me to that conclusion), but your point is that it would be OK if the package is vaccuum sealed....uh, which it appears to be.

    Then your last point is the same thing I said, but you didn't quote that part of my message. I told him to buy new coffee, didn't you see that? I'm starting to think you're one of those people that stands by the exit at a grocery store to check your receipt for errors, never knowing what an asshole everyone else thinks you are.



  • @Brendan Kidwell said:

    I found some old pre-packaged ground coffee in my fridge--I think I inherited it from my mom when she gave me her old coffee maker. It's from the American Dunkin Donuts coffee shop chain. So, I want to know if it's expired yet. Anyone care to defend whoever designed this useless label?

    For those of you not browsing with images, the characters clearly say "USE BY 06 08 04." I couldn't tell you what it means though. Might as well be written in hex. Hell, maybe that is hex.



    It's June 8, 2004. Take a look at the format of every other food product sold in stores in the United States. The vast majority of products use MM-DD-YY.

    Come on, you couldn't do a little comparison and figure that out on your own? There's WTF'ery and there's not being able to make deductions based on readily available information. I'll leave it up as an exercise for the reader to determine where the original post lies.

    sincerely,
    Richard Nixon


  • @Manni said:

    Thanks for the science lesson Juan Valdez. Are you for real? You sound like you're disagreeing with me (the word "wrong" kinda led me to that conclusion), but your point is that it would be OK if the package is vaccuum sealed....uh, which it appears to be.

    I was disagreeing on the statement I quoted. Coffee does indeed have a short lifespan. Vaccumpacking extends it - though it's hard to say how long in this case, hence the wtf.
    I figure quite a lot of people make the mental connection "old coffee doesn't kill you"=>"coffee has near unlimited lifespan".

    @Manni said:

    Then your last point is the same thing I said, but you didn't quote that part of my message. I told him to buy new coffee, didn't you see that? I'm starting to think you're one of those people that stands by the exit at a grocery store to check your receipt for errors, never knowing what an asshole everyone else thinks you are.

    Hey! Go for the ball, not the man! You have next to no basis for judging my personality, and if I need a psychoanalysis, I'll contact a shrink.



  • @Richard Nixon said:

    I'll leave it up as an exercise for the reader to determine where the original post lies.

    I gave him the benefit of the doubt that he was telling the truth...  But that's just me.



  • I've got a ThermaCare heat wrap sitting on my desk and I looked at the expiration date on the package. 

    EXP 12/2007 21:37

    So the *day* isn't important enough to know, just "December of 2007", but there's a time?  Or maybe it's a serial day and it expires January 12th of 2007.  At 9:37 PM.  In an unknown time zone.

    I'd better put this thing on quick.



  • @aihtdikh said:

    Might as well be written in hex. Hell, maybe that is hex.


    Yeah, I think it's in hex.
    But I can't work out what hex 06, 08 or 04 would be in decimal, could somebody help me?






    simple, 06 = 6, 08 = 8, 04 = 4

    0A = 10, and from there, it gets more and more difficult to calculate with the "naked eye"



  • @Ametheus said:

    @aihtdikh said:
    Might as well be written in hex. Hell, maybe that is hex.


    Yeah, I think it's in hex.
    But I can't work out what hex 06, 08 or 04 would be in decimal, could somebody help me?




    simple, 06 = 6, 08 = 8, 04 = 4
    0A = 10, and from there, it gets more and more difficult to calculate with the "naked eye"

    You can tell that it's in Hex because every number has a 0 in front of it.  Except the 0s.  But if they had numbers in front of them, and those had more numbers in front of them, then it would be some sort of super hex!  You'd have to just give up and include a "i give up" character, like an X.  So you'd have:

    4 = 0x00000004

    Et voila!  Hex!



  • @AlpineR said:

    Around Christmas I was drinking a bottle of Aquafina water and noticed the expiration date:

    JUN3006

    I thought, wow, that's pretty bold to claim that their water will be good for a thousand years. Then again, how can water spoil?

    It took a while to realize that they meant June 30th, 2006. What happens to the water on July 1st?



    Water doesn't spoil. The plastic bottle contaminates it over time. That's why you're not supposed to refill used water bottles.



  • <FONT face=Arial>Barry M.: "what happens at 8:06?".</FONT>

    <FONT face=Arial>08:05:57 *tic* *tic* *tic*</FONT>

    <FONT face=Arial>08:05:58 *bzzzzzzzzz*</FONT>

    <FONT face=Arial>08:05:59 *BZZZZZZZZZ*</FONT>

    <FONT face=Arial>08:06:00 *KABOOM*</FONT>

    <FONT face=Arial>You'd better duck&cover...</FONT>

     



  • @s3p5 said:

    Water doesn't spoil. The plastic bottle contaminates it over time. That's why you're not supposed to refill used water bottles.

    Ahem...  if I refill the bottle, won't the new water be "fresh" once again?  Unless of course I refill it and then leave it sitting for 4 years...  It's just a vast conspiracy by the water companies to sell more plastic bottles.  [:|][;)]

    It's like buying a bottle of Coke.  Most of the production expense is in the container, not in the liquid inside it.  That's how the bottling companies could afford for so many years to give such rich cash-back rewards for returning the glass bottles.

    The Urban Legend Reference Pages article on the subject:  http://www.snopes.com/medical/toxins/petbottles.asp


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