Sell on Amazon Sign in
This article applies to selling in: United States

Expiration dates on FBA products

Before listing expiration-dated inventory, ensure that you adhere to the policies and requirements below. Failure to comply may result in removal of your listings, disposal of your inventory, or deactivation of your Amazon selling account.

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, whether 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.
  • Any product with a period-after-opening (PAO) symbol (image below).


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 Shelf life
Chips and other snacks 90–180 days
Dried fruit 180–270 days
Baby formula 180–365 days
Cereal and granola bars 180–365 days
Pet food and treats 180–540 days
Beverages such as coffee, tea, soda, and juice 270–540 days
Salad dressings and oils 270 days
Flour, spices, and baking supplies 270–365 days
Peanut butter, jams, and preserves 365 days
Pasta 365 days
Condiments, including salt, pepper, and sugar 365–730 days
Candy 540 days
Canned food 540 days
Herbal or mineral supplements 730 days
Cleaning supplies 900–1,825 days
Personal care and beauty products (shampoos, soaps, lotions, makeup, fragrances) 900–1,825 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.
  • All baby food and baby formula products must have a clearly labeled expiration date.
  • Any expiration date on the product must be clearly labeled as an expiration date. A best-by or sell-by date is considered the equivalent of an expiration date.
  • Any manufacturing date on the product must be clearly labeled as a manufacturing date. 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.
  • All medical devices must have expiration dates. They must be clearly labeled using YYYY-MM-DD format.
  • For products other than medical devices, acceptable date formats are:
    • MM-DD-YYYY
    • 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 cover up 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, visit Use an Amazon barcode to track inventory and FBA Label Service.

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 for 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, visit Remove inventory automatically.

Helpful Links

FBA Labeling Video Tutorials

FBA product barcode requirements

Remove inventory (overview)

Sign in to use the tool and get personalized help (desktop browser required). Sign in


Was this article helpful?
Thank you for your feedback
How can we improve this help page? Note: This form doesn’t create a support case. Please specify what you think is wrong with the content itself.
1000
What was helpful?
1000
Thanks again for your help!
Thank you for your feedback. If you have more questions, please Contact Us.

Reach Hundreds of Millions of Customers

Start Selling On Amazon


© 1999-2020, Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates