An omega-3 supplement that has “gone bad,” whether from poor handling by the manufacturer or passing its expiration date, is ineffective at best. Worse, it could be unsafe to consume.
Stability, also known as shelf-life, refers to how quickly and easily a product will deteriorate under normal storage conditions. Spoiled products may have an unpleasant fishy taste or smell, but this is not always the case, especially for encapsulated products.
Why is stability a problem for omega-3 products? Similar to how a cut apple turns brown when exposed to oxygen, oil-based ingredients are naturally prone to oxidation. This means that fish oil that has been exposed to unsuitable conditions at any point in the supply chain, such as high temperatures or excess humidity, could be spoiled or rancid by the time it makes it to the shelf.
IFOS takes the burden off you by testing products for stability to make sure they are as fresh and shelf-stable as possible. Stability results are shown in IFOS Product Reports so that you can rest easy knowing you are not wasting money on a spoiled product.