An open letter to egg shippers
I am excited about our business arrangement and look forward to your eggs arriving here in the best possible condition. While I am sure you have had plenty of experience shipping eggs, I have had vast experience receiving eggs. Many of those I have received have failed miserably. I would like to share what I feel is the ideal way to receive eggs.
1. Eggs must be fresh. By that I mean that they should be less than 3 days. It takes 3 days for USPS to get the eggs from you to me and then they need to rest for 24 hours. Any eggs over 3 days old when shipped will be over 7 days old when I get them into my incubator. (when I negotiate for shipped eggs that I am going to take overseas I only buy from sellers that can collect the day before and the day of posting). Also remember that the older the egg the larger the air cell so the more damage. Please never ship me an egg laid on a Wednesday.
2. Please label the eggs before you wrap them. You may only have one breed of birds but I may be buying several orders at one and sometimes I have to look up the shipping label to reference in order to find out who they came from and what breed they are. I am always impressed when the date laid is also on there. A lead pencil or non-toxic marker such as a sharpie are great. One shipper also included a letter code for the different pens. This was great as I could then provide feedback to the shipper about the hatch rates from different pens.
3. Packing. I prefer the skyline method.http://www.skylinepoultry.com/Packing___shipping_eggs.html using bubble wrapped individual eggs and have them sit large end up. Use lots of shredded paper or styro peanuts to fill the voids between, above and below the eggs. Then place them in a second box with the same material padding. This will minimized impact damage. Lots of heavy and odd shaped items will be in the same trucks as these precious lives. Alternatively, ship with foam inserts available fromwww.texaspoultry.com. I personally use these to ship eggs overseas. They are more costly but the best solution I have found.
4. Shipping. Never ship on Thursday. That will guarantee you will give me old eggs. The best shipping days are Saturdays, Monday and Tuesday. This gives the post office wiggle room to mess up the shipment and still get here with time to salvage. A Wednesday and Thursday shipments are risky. Fridays are OK but occasionally the USPS can get eggs here in 2 days and Friday shipments remove that possibility.
5. Ask me if it is my preference to pick them up at the post office (reducing handling) or not. Some of who work cannot get to the post office. Others would prefer less handled eggs.
6. Ship me what I buy. Yesterday I got a shipment of advertised as 16+ Ameraucana Buff and Ameraucana eggs. 10 were brown. When I contacted the seller he said that they were not buff colored Ameraucanas but Ameraucana rooster over Buff Orpington hens. This is deceptive and I demanded a refund for the whole sale. 6 blue eggs will not help for me at all.
The disclaimer that it is in the lap of the gods after they leave their hands is all well and good but you should give the best product available.
Thanks for reading!