Foods Unsuitable for Donation

Certain foods are not suitable for donation because of safety concerns. These foods include:

  • Alcohol
  • Any foods prepared, cooked, cooled or reheated at home including home canned, vacuum-packed or pickled foods.
  • Perishable foods past a “use by” date (see additional dating information below), unless frozen.
  • Foods previously served to consumers.
  • Foods in sharply dented, swollen, bulging, leaking or rusted cans.
  • Foods in opened or torn containers exposing the food to potential contamination.
  • Unpasteurized milk and milk products.
  • Foods with an “off” odor or that show any signs of spoilage (browning, slimy layer, unusual color).
  • “Distressed” foods = foods that have been exposed to fire, flooding, excessive heat, smoke, radiation, other environmental contamination.
  • Foods designated for discard per regulatory or donor standards.

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