Use your senses like you would with any other food. Is the color degraded? Does it smell rancid? Is it firm and white, or starting to look a little yellowed and translucent? It's cheap enough to throw out if it isn't looking right. And if you wouldn't eat it yourself, why keep it? We had an instructor at Johnson and Wales who had what she called her rancid food collection. There's an unmistakeable odor to rancid fat and flour.