In Japan and in Asian countries, expiration dates are written differently from ours. In Japan, numbers are written in year/month/day order. For example, if a product's expiration date is "April 23, 2025", the date is written as "04/25/23" or "2025/04/23".

Let's dive into the details:

On Japanese products, two options for indicating the expiration date can be indicated:

賞味期限(しょうみ きげん / best before date) - best before (literally)

消費期限(しょうひきげん) - end date


1)賞味期限(しょうみ きげん)- best before

“Best before this date/Best before” - Food tastes best before this date. For example, snacks, sweets, miso can be eaten even after this date. But be careful, as the taste and smell may become less intense.


2)消費期限(しょうひ きげん)- expiration date

“End date” is the date until which food can be safely eaten. For example, meat, fish, milk, etc. may spoil after the specified expiration date. They are not recommended to be used after it.

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