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This article applies to selling in: Germany

Expiration dates on FBA products

Before listing expiration-dated inventory, ensure that you adhere to the policies and requirements below. Not complying with product preparation requirements, safety requirements, and product restrictions is a violation of Amazon policy and may result in customer complaints, purchase order exclusions, account-level exclusions, and chargebacks.

Expiration-dated product definition

Amazon considers any product with a shelf life, or that loses effectiveness with time, to be subject to expiration, even if an expiration date is not indicated on the product packaging.

Products subject to expiration include but are not limited to:

  • Any product that has an expiration date printed on the product or its packaging
  • Consumable products such as potato chips, tea leaves, and nutritional supplements, for human or animal consumption
  • Topical products such as skin creams, soaps, shampoos, hair sprays, and cosmetics that are intended for human or animal use
  • Cleaning products such as disinfectant wipes, cleaning sprays and solutions, and detergents
  • Products that include components that can expire, such as a coffee machine that is sold bundled with coffee

Shelf life requirements for expiration-dated products

At the time of check-in at the fulfillment center, all products must have a remaining shelf life that allows sufficient time for the product to be consumed in full plus an additional 90 days. For example, a bottle of supplements with 240 daily servings must have a remaining shelf life of 240 days plus an additional 90 days at the time of check-in at the fulfillment center.

The table below lists products that Amazon considers subject to expiration, along with their respective shelf-life guidelines.

Note: This is not an exhaustive list and is intended as a guide only.
Product type Minimum arrival time at FC before product expiration
Baby & Infant 90 days
Baking Supplies 90 days
Beverages 90 days
Boxed Meals 90 days
Canned Goods 250 days
Cereals 150 days
Condiments/Spreads/Cooking 100 days
Foreign Foods 120 days
Gift Baskets & Hampers 70 days
Pasta & Grains 130 days
Cooking Sauces 100 days
Snacks & Desserts 70 days
Chocolate 90 days
Boxed Chocolate 90 days
Sweets 90 days
Desserts 90 days
Condiments 200 days
Spreads 180 days
Oil, Vinegar 100 days
White Bread & Similar 90 days
Naan, Breads, Chapatis & Pappadums 60 days
UHT Milk & Similar 60 days
Juices 90 days
Water 250 days
Soft Drinks 120 days
Tea 300 days
Coffee 150 days

Labeling expiration-dated products

Expiration-dated products must follow these labeling requirements.

  • All ingestible products (including animal products) must be clearly labeled with an expiration date or manufacturing date. Lot numbers alone are insufficient. Exceptions to consumable products are listed below.
  • All baby food and baby formula products must have a clearly labeled expiration date.
  • Any expiration date must be clearly labeled . A best before (end) or best-by and used by date is considered the equivalent of an expiration date.
  • Any manufacturing date must be clearly labeled. A manufacturing date is the equivalent of a production date.
  • Failure to specify the manufacturing date or expiration date on a product might cause delays in receiving your products, or it may cause products to be received as expired at the fulfillment center.
  • Acceptable date formats are MM-DD-YYYY and MM-YYYY.
  • Numeric date formats are preferred. However, dates with an alphabetical abbreviation for the month (for example, DD-JAN-YYYY) are also acceptable.
  • All case packs, multi-packs, and display boxes must have the expiration date on the box or bundle, as well as on each individual item inside the box or bundle.
  • Do not conceal the original expiration date or other information on the product packaging (such as ingredients, drug facts, net contents, or distributor information).

In addition to meeting the requirements above, all expiration-dated FBA inventory requires an Amazon barcode label. For more information, go to Use an Amazon barcode to track inventory and FBA Label Service.

Product Exceptions

The following products are not mandated to include an expiration date on the physical product.

  • Fresh fruit and vegetables, including potatoes, which have not been peeled, cut, or similarly treated. Does not apply to sprouting seeds and similar products such as legume sprouts
  • Wines, liqueur wines, sparkling wines, aromatized wines, and similar products obtained from fruit other than grapes, and beverages falling within CN code 2206 00 obtained from grapes or grape musts
  • Beverages containing 10% or more of alcohol by volume
  • Bakers’ or pastry cooks’ wares are normally consumed within 24 hours of their manufacture
  • Vinegar
  • Cooking Salt
  • Solid Sugar
  • Confectionery products consisting almost entirely of flavored and/or colored sugars
  • Chewing gums and similar chewing products

Important:
  • Our system stores the expiration date information in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). Due to time-zone conversions, the date on the box label might differ from what you originally entered.
  • Items that are past expiration at the time of arrival at Amazon fulfillment centers will be marked for disposal. Inventory subject to disposal cannot be returned to you.
  • When shipping products to our fulfillment centers, each box can have only one expiration date per ASIN. You can ship multiple ASINs in the same box as long as each ASIN has only one expiration date. If there are multiple expiration dates for the same ASIN, the products with different expiration dates must be shipped in separate boxes.

Prepping expiration-dated products

Expiration-dated products must be fully enclosed and sealed in packaging suitable for shipping. Expiration-dated products that require additional preparation, such as poly-bagging or bubble wrap, must have labels with expiration dates applied to the outside of the product prep or packaging to ensure that the expiration date is accessible to Amazon associates during the check-in process.

Inventory control at Amazon fulfillment centers

Once products have arrived at our fulfillment centers, we monitor their shelf life to protect our customers from receiving products past expiration. Unsold inventory that passes its expiration date, or is close to exceeding the shelf life of the ASIN, is set to unsellable status. To have your unsellable products sent back to you automatically, please ensure your inventory settings are set to do so. For more information, go to Remove inventory automatically.

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