Most raw materials we sell expire over time. Influenced by ultra violet light from the sun, water vapour and oxygen from the air and the chemical reactions between components in mixtures the composition changes over time, in general not for the better.
We cannot predict perfectly when a product will expire. It depends very much on the care put into storage and use of the product. Take for instance lemon oil: in case you store it cool and dark, and do not open the bottle at all it may be still usable after three years. In case you open the bottle, keep the cap off it, put it in the sun in a humid environment only a few hours may render it useless.
To help to decide if a product is still usable or not most raw materials we sell are provided with a Batch & Expire marking. You find it
at the very right side of our product labels. It may look like this:
B23 - EXP 08/2019
- This means that the product is from batch 23 and expires after August 2019.
The expiration date put at our labels is a guide, not a guarantee. We think that under normal conditions, kept cool (15-20 °C), dry, dark and in the closed original packaging (or another suitable, airtight container) the product should be usable until at least this date.
The expiration date is in general at least 4 months in the future at the moment we make the invoice, so for instance you order at April 26,
we ship and invoice at April 29, then the expiration date is at least until August of the same year. In most cases it is (much) longer.
There are however two exceptions:
- Products that have a relatively short shelf life may be sold until the expiration date - we inform you about this in the description of the products and include the oldest expiration date of the current stock.
- Products that are sold out, we inform you about the expiration date in those cases. In this case we might even sell it after the expiration date.
In general the following applies:
- Keep raw materials in the original, closed bottle or jar, or replace it by a suitable, airtight container.
- Keep raw materials in the dark.
- Keep raw materials dry and in a dry environment.
- Open the package only when needed and keep it only open for as long as needed - not longer.
- Do not use screw-on droppers as a closure for bottles, unless the bulb of it is made out of a premium airtight material like chlorobutyl rubber.
- Avoid contamination from other products.
- Addition of an antioxidant to products prone to oxidation may extend its shelf life.
Some people use a refrigerator to store (some) products. That can be a good solution in some cases, however keep in mind:
- That some materials may crystallise or solidify in the cold, for instance rose oil and cedar oils, sometimes irreversable.
- To avoid condensation of water in the packaging, this may happen due to the lowering of temperature.
- When storing flamable volatile products in the fridge you should use an explosion proof refrigerator.
- Food may be contaminated if stored in a fridge with fragrance materials.