A Failure of The Shelf Life of Spam

Notice the swelling on the sides of the can on the right, compared to a good can

Spam is a versatile and hardy food which many people think has a good shelf life, but does it really? In the past, I have mentioned on several occasions that Hormel Food products do not have an expiration date, only a best use date. On their website, they make the following statement about their products.

“How long Does Canned Meat last?”

The product is always safe to consume as long as the seal has remained intact, unbroken and securely attached. However, the flavor and freshness of the product gradually begin to decline after three years from the manufacturing date.” Generally the shelf life of spam lasts for 2-5 years. How long it lasts depends on the conditions of where it is stored.

I have recently have had six cans of Hormel Spam 25% Less Sodium go bad.  There was no damage to the cans.  The cans were swollen and spongy when you squeezed them.  The cans had been stored in a cool basement and the best use date was Oct 2014.  When the cans were opened, you could hear a hissing noise.

Here you can see the best use date on the bottom of the can

I have sent an inquiry to Hormel Foods and will publish their reply.  In the past, I have not had any problems with Hormel foods and I hope this is an aberration.  But it goes to show that you always need to check your cans prior to opening regardless of the length of time you have had them stored and don’t forget to rotate your foods.

 

Updated July, 2020
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