Eggs purchased at the store - how old are they really?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Chicabee19, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. Chicabee19

    Chicabee19 Songster

    Aug 8, 2008
    just wondering....

    Last edited: Aug 11, 2008
  2. soctippy

    soctippy In the Brooder

    Dec 22, 2007
    Are you sure you wanna know?
    I have heard that they can be as much as three weeks old, but I cannot remember where I heard that.
  3. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member 11 Years

    If they were only three weeks old....[​IMG] Add on to that number.
  4. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Songster

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    I've heard that they can be over a month old...which is why I'm so impatient for my girls to start laying, I've never had a fresh egg before.
  5. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC

    an interesting website that tells how to 'date' eggs found in the supermarket.

    There is a code on the end of the carton. One of the components of that code is the day # of the year.

    1. Pack Date: Example: 218

    This required Julian date gives the number of days since the first of the year to the time when packers washed, graded, and placed the eggs in the carton. Typically, packers pack eggs within one to seven days of their being laid. It's a three-digit number, for example: "003" means the 3rd of January. When comparing cartons, pick the highest number for the freshest eggs.

    2. Code date (optional). Example: EXP AUG 29

    The packer can omit this date or include one of two date types: the expiration date or the still-good-for-use date.

    I just pulled out a carton someone gave me from a recent store purchase. It had the following info on the end of the carton:

    205P-1382 Best by Sep 06 08

    So, according to this article, these eggs were packed on the 205th day of the year: July 24, 2008, and since most eggs are packed within 1-7 days of being laid, we can make the assumption that these eggs were laid no LATER than July 17th.

    The Best by date on this carton is 45 days after the packed date.

    Another site I found stated that the farm/packager has 30 days to get into the store, and the store another 30 days to sell it. There was no reference given on that site though...

    Anyway, the day number of the year would be helpful info to know before you go egg shopping. Then you can compare the package date on the carton to know how long those eggs have been sitting around...​
  6. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    Many years ago (35+) I worked at my neighbors chicken farm. The egg truck came every 2-3 weeks to pick up the eggs. I don't have a clue how long after that until they hit the store shelves.
  7. deb1

    deb1 Songster

    Jun 26, 2008
    WHen I had chickens it surprised me how long it took them to get as easy to peel as store bought eggs. So, I had already guessed that the eggs that I purchased in the store were at least a couple weeks old. From reading some of your replies it sounds like the eggs can be older then that!
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2008
  8. Dar

    Dar Crowing

    Jul 31, 2008
    I have just one word about this...

    as soon as my girls start laying I will never buy a store bought egg again...thats nasty [​IMG]
  9. Colored Egg Farmer

    Colored Egg Farmer Chicken overload

    Yep its all true. [​IMG]

    the only thing I see wrong is the before pacakageing. Its usually done first -second day. If its a cage you have to take eggs off every day or the machines will over load.

    O and don't mess the Julian date with the packer #
  10. emandmikey

    emandmikey Songster

    Apr 30, 2008
    Wake Forest, NC
    Wow, very interesting information - I had never heard about that packing day # before. Now I'll look next time I go into a store. Of course a buddy just gave me a dozen Banty eggs so It might be next week before we head out to look at the store again... I can't wait to get my own flock!!!!! I hate buying eggs, but love getting them at the Farmer's Market!

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