5-digit expiry date on product baffles shopper, Retailer gives bizarre explanation
London, June 27: One shopper in the UK was baffled by the expiry date on his sachet of Tesco burger relish, which cryptically read '20140'. The shopper could not figure out the five-digit date.
Taking to Twitter, the customer Matthew Stock asked the supermarket what exactly it meant by the date "20140", which left him unable to decode the expiry date on his burger relish.
Well, the answer is sadly not that simple.
A Tesco employee called Sharon replied suggesting it could mean January 2 in 2040 - asking the shopper to submit a photograph of the bar code to help solve the mystery.
"If I'm honest Matthew, I have no idea. 2nd of January 2040? Can you send me the products barcode number? I'll have a chat with my support team about this and find out for you. Thanks - Sharon."
The conversation then took another turn when another Tesco employee replied suggesting his expiry date could be written in another calendar altogether.
Maggie revealed the code was, in fact, written in the Julian date - a continuous count of days since noon Universal Time on January 1, 4713 BC. The expiration date read 20 May 2020, Tesco's support team found.
The response naturally surprised the shopper who wrote,"Are you serious? Surely that's not a legitimate way of dating products?"
The tweet had ever since gone viral with shoppers tweeting the grocer with bizarre codes, and asking for Maggie to decode it.
Basically, the Julian calendar hasn't been used in Britain since 1752, which was when the now-prevalent Gregorian system - the most commonly used calendar in the world - was first introduced.