Wiganers who give items to local foodbanks are being urged to check the sell-by dates of their items after a 40-year-old bag of pasta was donated.
Volunteers at a foodbank in Essex made the discovery while routinely checking dates on items and weighing them.
Staff at local centres rigorously check the dates on cans and packets which are handed it but are urging people who donate to check also.
The aged bag of pasta arrived on a day when the centre received more than one tonne of donations, and interim manager Michael Beckett said he could not be specific about where it came from.
He said: “I imagine someone had a clear-out of the back of a cupboard, a pantry maybe at grandma’s house - 40-year-old pasta is not the sort of thing most people have in their house.
The bag of macaroni pasta, with a use-by date of 1977, was found along with a second bag of pasta which went out of date in 1979 and a packet of Sainsbury’s instant mashed potato that went out of date in 1979/80.
Mr Beckett said the previous oldest items received at the foodbank were anchovies and beans from the 1980s.
He appealed for people to check items before giving them to the charity: “We do appreciate what people give us but if it’s like this we can’t really use it.”
Wiganers regularly buy food and leave in bins at supermarkets across the borough, but others regularly clear out cupboards and also hand over items.
The borough’s biggest homeless charity, The Brick now accepts online grocery deliveries directly during their opening hours (Mon – Fri 9am to 4.30pm).
A spokesman said: “If we have enough regular deliveries, it helps us to protect the Food Bank from the shortages that we sadly experience.”
Deliveries can be arranged online via: Asda; Tesco; Sainsbury’s; Morrisons; Ocado and Amazon and sent to 10 Arcade Street, Wigan, WN1 1LU.
The charity asks if you help in this way, let them know the delivery slot you have booked by emailing Giving@thebrick.org.uk.