When does Neocate actually expire?

Posted 12.30.11 | Nutrition Specialist

Q:I’ve found a few cans of Neocate at the back of my pantry that I’d forgotten about. The expiration date was last week, but they’re still okay to use, right?

A:We get questions about using Neocate past the expiration date often. Here’s what you need to know:

The expiration date

For our powdered Neocate products you can find the expiration date on the bottom of the can. If you’re looking at a drink box of E028 Splash, you can find the expiration date on the top of the drink box. The expiration dates on the Neocate family of products follow the standard North American format, which is Month/Day/Year. Technically, the product is good to use through midnight on that date.

How are your expiration dates determined?

The expiration date on any product, not just Nutricia products, is based on several factors. One is the integrity of the packaging materials. We want to ensure they will keep the contents safe until the expiration date. Another is the stability of the ingredients. For instance, some fats go rancid faster than others – think fresh walnuts versus vegetable oil for cooking. We want to ensure that the product is fresh for the full shelf-life.

A related factor is to ensure that the nutrients in the product are going to be present at the levels on the label. Nutrients, particularly vitamins, have a tendency to naturally break down over time, some faster than others. Especially since many children use Neocate to meet their full nutritional needs, it’s very important that the right amount of each nutrient is in the product. We conduct extensive testing under a number of conditions to ensure that the nutrients hold up until the expiration date.

What we recommend

The ultimate intent of an expiration date is to keep our customers safe and ensure they receive the nutrients that they need. We cannot recommend using any of our products past the expiration date. Period!

If you have further questions about this, we’d recommend discussing this with your health care team. It may help to provide them with the above information to get their informed opinion. 

Read Comments (6)

  • 2012-11-04 | Duane Buchanan

    Found a can with the exp date of 3013! A hundred year shelf life would be pretty cool.

  • 2012-11-05 | Rob


    Really? Wow - that’s a mistake! Would you mind giving us a call when you get a chance? We’d love to let our production team know about this mistake so that it doesn’t happen again! You can reach us at (800) 365-7354, option 2. We look forward to hearing from you!


  • 2013-06-12 | Kayla

    i have found that i have like 2 cases of neocate infant and about a case or so of jr. they are out of date like up to a couple days ago but they are all unopened. I hate to let them go unused and thow them away. what can i do? is there some use for them??

  • 2013-06-14 | Christine

    Dear Kayla,
    We can not recommend using the products after the expiration date. If you were to use them, it is at your discretion. It may help to speak with your health care team to see what they think. The main concerns are the nutrients. After the expiration date, the nutrients may not as what is listed on the label. We also can not guarantee the product after the expiration time.
    If you were to discard the products, just remember the cans and lids are recyclable, so no need to trash them all. smile  We hope this helps!

  • 2014-05-28 | Matt

    My son had been drinking Splash which was past its due date when he was infected with Salmonella. We threw out the rest once we saw this, but any chance the infection and outdated Splash could be linked?

  • 2014-05-30 | Christine Graham-Garo

    Dear Matt,
    We have not received any similar reports for our Splash products.  Our products and packaging are thoroughly tested and heat treated before distribution.  If you have further questions or concerns, please contact our medical team at 800-365-7354. We hope your son is doing well.

    Best wishes,

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Food Allergy Living is a resource for parents of children with food allergies, brought to you by Nutricia, the makers of Neocate. For more in-depth information about our purpose & authors, see our About Food Allergy Living page.