NEWINGTON, Conn. (WTNH) — Sen. Richard Blumenthal says “sell by” dates on many products you see in the store are confusing.

That means consumers can throw away billions of dollars of food which is still actually good to eat. The senator says there should be a national and uniform sell-by date system.

“Some of the products like fish and chicken you want to use right away. You don’t want that to sit around in your refrigerator for days after the sell by date or enjoy by date. Bakery products, you know, will go a lot longer and as far as how long they’ll go, really depends on the consumer,” said Barbara Bucknam, Director of Quality at Stew Leonards.

Sen. Blumenthal says not only does the food being prematurely thrown out leads to waste, but it clogs local dumps as well.