Food Safety Issues/Fully cooked packed ham


The expiration date of use by has expired a month76xSW ago.  is it still safe to heat and eat?

Hi Annette,

I assume from your question that the "use-by" date on the ham was last month and the ham has been refrigerated -- not frozen. If so, the recommendation is that the ham should not be use after that date.

In the future, if you can't use a ham by the "Use-by" date, the recommendation is to freeze the ham for up to 2 months for maxiumum quality.  You can freeze it longer and the ham will stay safe, but the longer it is frozen the quality decreases.

Sorry...looks like you'll need to purchase a new ham for Easter.


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Carol Schlitt


I can answer questions on home food safety, sanitation and home food preservation.


I am a former Extension educator, nutrition, wellness and food safety, having retired August 1, 2010. I am a food safety instructor for the Illinois Department of Public Health, a ServSafe Instructor/Proctor and have my own company, Safe & Savory Solutions, Inc -

National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (Past President and current Historian), St. Louis Culinary Society.

BS - University of Illinois MS - Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville

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