You have probably never seen the numbers on the bottom of a milk package or if you did, you never thought about their meaning.
They aren’t any numbers written randomly, and there is a hidden meaning behind them that few people are familiar with.
Grab one milk package and take a closer look at the bottom.
You will see that there are numbers from 1-5 (in some countries you may see from 1-6). There isn’t one hidden meaning, but two. The first one really scared the people who found out what these numbers actually mean. They represent how many times the milk’s usage date have expired and it was reprocessed by the manufacturers.
There is a legal regulation that allows the expired milk to be reprocessed at 190°C and send back at the market shelves. The manufacturers can repeat this procedure up to 5 times and they are obligated to print the exact number of times they have reprocessed the milk.
So, you will see the printed numbers (123456) and you will also notice that one of the numbers is missing. The number that misses is the exact times the milk was reprocessed.
For example 12356, you notice that number 4 is missing, which is the exact number of how many times the milk was reprocessed.
Some packages aren’t marked with all those numbers, but with only one that shows the same thing. Often, the manufacturers are combining them in the boxes, so you may find that the number that is missing from any package can be seen on another one.
Some people say that those numbers represent how many times the carton has been recycled. Anyway, the sadly truth is that the reprocessing of the milk is legal in many countries.
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