Bud Light is one of the most popular beers out there, with millions of fans enjoying it all over the world.
However, if you’ve had some bottles of Bud Light in your fridge for a while, then you might be wondering if they can actually expire and go off.
Can you still enjoy them? Or does Bud Light expire after a while?
Our handy guide below will tell you about whether Bud Light expires, as well as what it’s like to drink it beyond the expiry date and how you can make the shelf life of Bud Light last longer.
Does Bud Light Expire?
Like every beer, Bud Light does indeed expire after a certain amount of time.
However, beer doesn’t expire like food, where it’s dangerous to eat it once it’s past the expiration date.
Instead, beer and Bud Light just tastes less fresh once it expires. As more and more time passes, the beer will taste flatter and more stale.
How Do You Know When Your Bud Light Expires?
The way to know when your bottle or can of Bud Light expires is by checking its expiration code.
Every bottle or can of Bud Light has an expiration code printed on it that will tell you when the beer expires.
With this, you’ll know that the beer will be fresh before that date.
On a can of Bud Light, the expiration code is printed on the bottom. But how can you interpret the code?
Let’s use an example of an expiration code: 07JAN22.
The two numbers at the start refer to the day of the month. With our example, it’s the 7th day.
The three letters that come after that tell you the month of expiry. For our example, the month is January, since “JAN” is short for it.
Finally, the end numbers will tell you what year the Bud Light will expire in. In terms of our example, it will expire in 2022.
When you put all of the pieces together, this can of Bud Light will expire on the 7th of January 2022.
However, Bud Light cans made before August 2015 had a “Born On” code instead of an expiration code.
This “Born On” code was introduced by the manufacturers of Bud Light, Anheuser-Busch (known as “A-B”), back in 1996 and it tells you when the can of beer was made.
However, since they haven’t released a can of Bud Light with a “Born On” code for many years, you can guarantee that any can you still have with one printed on it will be extremely stale!
How Long Does Unopened Bud Light Keep For?
If you’ve got a can of Bud Light that has been unopened, then you might be wondering how long it will last.
A-B, the manufacturers of Bud Light, say that their beer has a shelf life of 110 days.
This means that it will start to lose its freshness and “expire” about 100 days after it has been produced in the factory.
However, like all beer, Bud Light is still safe to drink after its expiration date.
With that being said, it will have lost some of its flavor and crispness, and as more time goes on beyond the expiry date it will get flatter and more stale.
After about six months have passed since the expiration date, the beer will have gone flat and lost its flavor.
There would admittedly be little point to drinking it at this point, but at least it is safe!
A good way to keep your beer staying crisp and fresh for a longer period of time is by storing it in the refrigerator.
This can actually extend its shelf life, in some cases allowing it to stay crisp for almost two years beyond the expiry date.
If you’re storing your Bud Light in the fridge, then you’ll want to keep the temperature between 50 and 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
This is the optimum range of temperature for your beer to keep fresh and extend its shelf life.
How To Store Bud Light Properly
An unopened Bud Light should be stored in the fridge between 50-55 degrees Fahrenheit.
However, opened and unopened beers can be affected by three main factors that cause the drink to deteriorate.
With that being said, an opened Bud Light is far more likely to suffer these factors than an open one.
One of these factors is oxygen, which can cause beer to go flat.
If you store your unopened Bud Light can or bottle upright then it should help stop the beer inside coming into contact with the oxygen that’s already inside the container.
If it does touch it, then oxidation can occur, which will make the beer taste off and stale.
Oxygen isn’t much of a threat to an unopened can of Bud Light.
However, once you’ve opened your drink, then oxygen is going to be unstoppable, and it will cause the drink to slowly go flat.
Unfortunately, there is little you can do to stop that.
Another threat to beer is bacteria exposure, which can be a big problem for opened Bud Light.
This is especially the case if you’ve already had a sip of the drink.
Once you’ve taken a drink of it, you’re providing it with bacteria of your own, and then those bacteria can begin to multiply themselves.
Placing the Bud Light in a fridge will help to slow this multiplication, but not stop it.
You shouldn’t leave your Bud Light opened for long as a result, because you don’t want to be drinking multiplied bacteria.
On top of that, don’t give the beer to someone else, because then the bacteria spreads.
The third factor that can affect an opened Bud Light is exposure to light.
Whether you’ve got a can of Bud Light or a bottle will actually alter how much light exposure damages the beer.
This is because a can has a cover that helps block the light, while a bottle is see-through and lets it in more easily.
If your Bud Light isn’t even opened yet, light can still damage it and make the beer lose its flavor.
As a result, always try to keep it in a darker part of the fridge to make absolutely sure that no light is getting to it regularly.
Another important factor to note is that you should keep your Bud Light out of hot areas.
This may seem obvious, since we all know to refrigerate beers anyway, but you should actually avoid putting the Bud Light in a warm area and then returning it to the cold of the fridge.
The change in temperatures actually affects the beer, and will make it taste odd.
How Long Will Bud Light Last After Being Opened?
An opened drink of Bud Light will usually keep its quality for around a day, but only if you’ve put it in the fridge and covered the drink’s opening.
From then on, the taste will deteriorate. However, you should drink it soon.
Why? Well, as we covered above, Bud Light can be particularly vulnerable to oxygen and bacteria.
This is mainly the case when it’s been opened.
The oxygen will cause the drink to go flatter, while the bacteria exposure could pose some threat to your health.
The alcohol volume of Bud Light is not high enough to kill off all the bacteria and storing the drink in the fridge will only slow down their multiplication.
As a result, it’s best to store your opened Bud Light in the fridge and cover the can or bottle’s opening.
Try to finish the drink as soon as possible, and don’t share it with anyone else for bacterial reasons.
Is It Safe To Drink Expired Bud Light?
If you drink Bud Light after it has passed its expiration date, you should be mostly fine.
The beer has undergone pasteurization in the factory to help keep its bacteria count low, and Bud Light will really just go flat and stale once the expiry date has gone.
If your Bud Light has been left open for days, though, we don’t recommend drinking it.
A beer that’s been open for a while could affect your health.
On top of that, expired beer will still give you the usual effects of alcohol.
Flat or not, the beer can still give you nausea and headaches, so drink responsibly.
Bud Light does expire, but an unopened bottle or can of it can still be drunk after the date. However, it tastes flatter!
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