shelf life


Definition of shelf life

: the period of time during which a material may be stored and remain suitable for use broadly : the period of time during which something lasts or remains popular

Examples of shelf life in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Do look for food or products with a shelf life longer than six months. Laura Daily, Washington Post, 20 Aug. 2020 This jug has a long shelf life, as the concentrated formula assures long-term, maximum effectiveness for years on end. Chris Hachey, BGR, 11 June 2021 In a time when today's business model has a shorter and shorter shelf life, assaulting assumptions is a critical and ongoing necessity to strategic thinking. Robert Tucker, Forbes, 15 June 2021 Given their more delicate nature, heirloom tomatoes have a shorter shelf life than hybrids. Zoe Denenberg, Southern Living, 7 June 2021 In fruits and vegetables, oxygen is produced at high respiration rates, which means a shorter shelf life. Mckenzie Sadeghi, USA TODAY, 20 Mar. 2021 Fruits and vegetables nearing the end of their shelf life take priority and what isn’t edible often becomes an ornament for the table. New York Times, 22 July 2021 Ten all-natural wines are served via keg-preservation system, allowing for glass pours and longer shelf life. Marc Bona, cleveland, 29 June 2021 Now, some 15 million boxes of unsold Girl Scouts Cookies are facing an unknown fate with a ticking shelf life of one year. Perri Ormont Blumberg, Southern Living, 17 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'shelf life.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of shelf life

1927, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for shelf life

Time Traveler

The first known use of shelf life was in 1927

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Dictionary Entries Near shelf life

shelf ladder

shelf life


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Statistics for shelf life

Last Updated

29 Aug 2021

Cite this Entry

“Shelf life.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for shelf life

shelf life


English Language Learners Definition of shelf life

: the length of time that food may be stored and still be good to eat
: the length of time during which something or someone lasts or remains popular

shelf life

\ ˈshelf-ˌ How to pronounce shelf life (audio) \

Medical Definition of shelf life

: the period of time during which a material (as a food or drug) may be stored and remain suitable for use


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