Does anyone keep their eggs out on the kitchen counter?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Ravennest, Oct 20, 2014.

  1. Ravennest

    Ravennest Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 28, 2014
    I wonder about this because I remember my grandmother never putting her eggs in the frig. My mother stressing that we had to.

    The difference between grandmother never washed the eggs just took a damp cloth and wiped them off...she air dried them...
    kept them on the counter...a few weeks. If there was a question if they were 'good' or not she would put them in a bowl of
    water...whichever floated or sank determined if they were 'good' or not...she would toss the 'bad' ones.
    The day I tried to literally wash them I got grounded...the soap would break the seal on the egg...
    she said I would have contaminated the eggs. The same lady that kept her
    'ice box' almost til 1970' about die hard.
    We never got ill though.

    My mother....eggs went from store to frig...that was muss no fuss.

    I have noticed that if you have a store bought egg and keep it out...they get harder then a rock to break. A fresh egg doesn't seem to.

    Do the pores on a fresh egg close off if they aren't set on and left on the counter? Does that naturally keep the bad germs out of the egg?
    My girls' eggs don't last long enough in the mornings to see the frig.

    Was wondering what the differences around the world are?
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2014
  2. The ChickenKing

    The ChickenKing Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 24, 2014
    The eggs your girls lay have a natural bacteria proof coating called the bloom, this will allow you to keep them out until at least two weeks, unless you wash them on which case you would put them in the fridge. Hope I helped!:)
  3. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    Mar 9, 2014
    My Coop
    Store purchased eggs have been washed and treated in ways that remove the "bloom" and necessitate refrigeration - fresh eggs that are not washed and have their bloom in tact are safe to store on the counter.
  4. Toddrick

    Toddrick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 28, 2014
    All of the eggs from the grocery in the U.S. are supposedly washed, so I would put those in the fridge for sure. In Europe they don't wash them because people prefer to keep them un-refrigerated I'm told. You can do it either way with your own fresh eggs.

    I never wash mine, but I do try and wipe poo off with a moist paper towel. Some say to throw them away if there is poo, but we didn't know better, and never had any issues. Of course, what is there to wipe off besides poo?
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2014
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas

    This is very accurate.

    I keep most of my eggs on the counter, sometimes for a few weeks. But I don’t keep dirty eggs on the counter. I wash them and put them in the fridge.

    Two things have to happen for the eggs to go bad. First bacteria has to get inside the eggs. Bloom is a great barrier and works really well but it is not always perfect. Dirty eggs can cause the bloom to fail, either poop or mud. So I wash those off and put them in the fridge. Tiny little smears are not much of a threat but clumps are. The dirtier they are the worse the threat.

    The other thing is that once bacteria gets inside it has to be able to grow. Refrigerator temperatures will prevent that growth. Kitchen counter temperatures will not. The warmer they are the faster the bacteria grows once it gets inside.

    Another thing about storing them on the counter. If they are fertile eggs and are stored warm, they can develop some. It doesn’t have to be incubation temperatures. I’ve read that you can get some development in the low 80’s Fahrenheit though I haven’t seen that. Still I recommend you don’t keep them on the counter if your household temperatures are very warm.
    1 person likes this.
  6. LeslieDJoyce

    LeslieDJoyce Overrun With Chickens

    Jul 30, 2012
    Sherwood, OR
    My Coop
    In England, for example, they do not refrigerate shell eggs before purchase because they are very concerned about the eggs sweating, which they believe increases the chances that bacteria will penetrate the egg (I gather the science on this is a bit mixed). This does not mean that eggs are not handled very carefully in England. They tend to both vaccinate and test flocks for some of the types of things that can make unrefrigerated eggs unsafe to eat (like salmonella, which can be present inside the egg where washing doesn't get rid of it). In countries where washing eggs is "illegal," they also have pretty strict standards about keeping eggs clean between getting laid and getting packaged. Also they realize unrefrigerated eggs also should be sold more quickly than cold-stored eggs. Unrefrigerated eggs lose quality pretty fast, and if there is any harmful bacteria inside or on the egg, that bacteria multiplies very quickly at room temperature.

    One thing I believe many people overlook is the temperature of the egg. There are temperature requirements for handling eggs in England. Eggs are supposed to be kept at a cooler version of room temperature without much fluctuation. Even grocery store temperatures are regulated so the proper temperature can be maintained for eggs. "Room temperature" becomes more important if the eggs are fertilized (I know my kitchen can get pretty hot in the middle of summer ...).

    I think some people believe that anything goes for unwashed eggs. But this is not quite true. We still need to handle eggs responsibly. And remember that if we put an egg in the fridge, we're also putting whatever is on the egg in the fridge where the fans will blow it around to our other foods (so if you have a dirty egg you want to refrigerate, you might also want to get the pooticules off it before you put it in the fridge).

    What is true is that the egg is designed to stay pretty clean inside for 21 days, at pretty high temps, as it incubates under a broody hen (and hens aren't super clean!). PART of the design of the egg is the bloom on the exterior of the egg shell. But that's not the only genius design feature ... there are other layers of protection between the developing chick and harmful bacteria -- layers that also protect eggs headed to the table.

    What is also true is if you're going to wash eggs: Improper washing can do more harm than good. It is worth the time to read about safe egg washing procedures.
    1 person likes this.
  7. tcstoehr

    tcstoehr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 25, 2014
    Canby, Oregon
    I don't refrigerate mine. I just keep them out in one of those egg skelter deals. I saw it on display and absolutely just HAD to have it. I simply couldn't continue without one. [​IMG]

  8. Sustained

    Sustained Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 17, 2014
    [​IMG] I've never seen one of those before

    I keep my eggs out on the counter. My hens lay in their nest boxes which I keep clean and it's rare for them to get dirty. I guess my hens make sure not to poo on the goods
  9. rebrascora

    rebrascora Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 14, 2014
    Consett Co.Durham. UK
    I never refrigerate my eggs summer or winter and they are fertile, but my house has thick stone walls and the temp doesn't go much above 25C even in mid summer. I don't wash them unless they are noticeably dirty and then right before I cook them. I have eaten them as old as 5, maybe even 6 weeks and they have been fine. If I am concerned, I crack them into a cup. If they look ok and smell ok, they are ok. I tend to ensure that the older ones are cooked right through rather than say having them with a runny yolk, but otherwise I really don't worry.

    Apparently in olden days when there was no artificial light or hybrid laying machines like we have today, the chickens didn't lay through the winter, so they preserved their eggs by coating them in a thick layer of wax and that enabled them to be kept for several months.
  10. Sustained

    Sustained Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 17, 2014
    That's really interesting. I've been freezing my extra eggs to use when the laying dies off but our house came with a bunch of household wax that I found on a top shelf (odd I know) so I may try that to save on some freezer space. And I'm curious lol

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