fingers peeling back sticker on salad with caption 'Key Food count your days!!' (l) salad in garbage with caption 'Key Food count your days!!' (c) expired sticker on salad with caption 'Key Food count your days!!' (r)


‘Got played’: Customer finds ‘expired’ label under new one after buying salad at grocery store

'Key Food count your days.'


Braden Bjella


Posted on Jan 14, 2023

A user on TikTok has gone viral after claiming that they purchased a salad at a Key Food in Harlem — only to discover that there was an expired label under the current one.

In a video with over 790,000 views as of Saturday, TikTok user @whywouldtheydothat alleges they purchased the salad only to discover that the Sell By date had allegedly been changed.

“Grabbed a salad from the Key Foods in Harlem and got played,” the user wrote in the caption. “Why would they put another label on top like it’s good smh.”

The visible Sell By date is January 11th, while the ‘original’ date is January 4th.

We’ve reached out to Key Food via the website contact form and @whywouldtheydothat via TikTok comment.

@whywouldtheydothat Grabbed a salad from the Key Foods in harlem and got played. Why would they put another label on top like it’s good smh. #onlyinnewyork #fyp #viral #trendingsound #itsachickensalad #keyfoods #keyfood #keyfoodsupermarket #pov #healthyliving #lies #scam #trending #chickensalad ♬ original sound – Kate & Loren

The creator then posted a follow-up video showing the alleged age of the salad, claiming that it was truly expired.

@whywouldtheydothat Replying to @starkiebabes ♬ original sound – whywouldtheydothat

“I smelled the chicken and it smelled funny. Then I took a bite and it was nasty like it was expired. All the veggies was soft. When the cucumber is that soft that means it’s gone bad,” @whywouldtheydothat wrote in the text overlaying the video.

“Just because the lettuce look good doesn’t mean it edible,” they said. “They probably just put a label over it because it appeared to still look good.”

Some users immediately supported the TikToker’s theory of events.

“SUE THEM,” a commenter exclaimed.

“What if they did that more than once and did it a few times and it expired in like November,” another questioned.

However, others pointed out a few issues with the TikToker’s point.

“It’s a sell by not expiration date,” a user wrote. “Anyone who has worked in grocery or knows someone who has knows that.”

For context, “a ‘Sell-By’ date tells the store how long to display the product for sale for inventory management. It is not a safety date. A ‘Use-By’ date is the last date recommended for the use of the product while at peak quality. It is not a safety date,” explains the USDA.

“Honestly they probably just put the wrong label,” a second offered. “I label things wrong sometimes and just put the right sticker over the wrong one.”

“Is it even the same type of salad,” a third questioned. “maybe they just reused the container and just didn’t take the label off all the way or smth.”

There is some evidence to suggest that this was simply an error. For example, the ‘original’ label lists the salad as a chicken caesar salad, whereas the new label appears to identify it as a “summer salad.”

Regardless, the creator remained unconvinced.

“I filmed this before I threw it out because I knew y’all would say something,” they wrote in the comments of their follow-up video. “I tried it before I threw it out and it was no good.”

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*First Published: Jan 14, 2023, 11:31 am CST