On July 19, 2015, “Last Week Tonight,” HBO’s satirical news program highlighted the enormous problems of food waste, expiration dates, and challenges to donating products to food pantries. Using clips from other news shows and the documentary Just Eat It, Host John Oliver pointed out the negative consequences of the current regulations while lampooning America’s obsession with consumption.
At 10:22 minutes into the segment, a clip from Emily Broad Leib’s appearance on the Today show was used to explain how arbitrary and disjointed expiration date labeling policies are nationwide, due to the fact that food manufacturers are in charge of setting the dates for the vast majority of products.
In addition the clip of FLPC’s Director, Oliver noted that 91 percent of consumers reported that at least occasionally they had discarded food past its “sell by” date out of concern for the product’s safety, a data point pulled from FLPC’s 2013 report, “The Dating Game: How Confusing Food Date Labels Lead to Food Waste in America.”
See the segment from “Last Week Tonight” below.
Food Law & Policy, Commentary
A grounding legal education in the Food Law and Policy Clinic
May 18, 2023