Eggs -- Storing and other questions (edited)


9 Years
Sep 14, 2010
Saskatchewan, Canada
Firstly -- I'm super sorry to the moderators if this isn't the right place to post this.

So I have some questions. When I get my flock going, I plan on having both layers and meat birds (and possibly a few dual purpose thrown in there) and I'm a little curious about eggs.

It bothers me that I can keep store bought eggs in the refridgerater literally months past the sell by dates and have them taste and be fine. I'll probably take some heat and be told I've just been lucky, but I'm okay with that.

I guess my first question would be how long do home-grown eggs store for? Should they be stored in or out of the refridgerator and why do you have the opinion one way or the other. Is there anything I should do to the eggs to make them keep better (ie wash/don't wash) and so on. What about fertile eggs.. I've never had one. Whats this "Bullseye" people talk about and is the taste effected (affected)?

Any information you would be able to throw my way on the subject of eggs is greatly appreciated and I'm sure I'm not the only one with these questions (I hope anyway). Of my many 'back yard homesteading' books that feature animals, they don't really talk about these issues and, if they do, only very briefly.

Thanks to everyone who responds if I dont have a chance to thank you personally.
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i read that most store bought eggs are a minium of 3 weeks old before being shipped to a grocery store...and the sell date can be over 6 weeks....i like to keep my eggs like my grandmother did in a cool spot on the kitchen counter...but when it is too hot i will put them in the refrigerator although the temp is too low and the humidity is too low...a good way to judge how old yours are and the store bought boil one of each in the same pan..the fresh egg will be hard to peel....not an eggspert just the way i do it ....happy trails
To address a couple of your queries:

Eggs are laid with a "bloom: - which is a coating ont he shell that helps to preserve them. If you wash them, you are removing the bloom, and the eggs will not last as long.

Fresh eggs will keep well on a kitchen counter (as long as it's not too hot), but, I have read an egg will age the same amount in one day on a counter as it will in one week in a refrigerator.

Personally, i choose to store my eggs in a fridge, just to maintain maximum freshness.

I know I have seem quite a few threads covering this topic - if you have time to do a search you may find some useful info & links in previous threads.
There are many ways to keep eggs without refrigeration..auscal is right, do not wash your eggs, personally though if I get a dirty one I will wash it off and store it separately in the fridge and use it soonest in a recipee as the bacteria from the poop is what makes it go bad, egg shells are permeable and will absorb ordor and tastes from the fridge.
Your fresh eggs, fertile or not, makes no difference can stay on the counter in a container- around 65 degrees is best to maintain the best flavor (refrigerators are way too cold )
I've heard of sodium silicate but haven't researched it yet. (Don't have enough eggs lasting that long yet-get eaten too fast)
A long term method of storing eggs is to soak them for 20 minutes in a solution of one part bleach to nine part water,air dry thouroughly, then layer in clean dry sawdust and keep in a cool dark area , they can last for months this way, I doubt I'll use that since it's an old sailor trick when your out on the water for long time without refrigeration.(or chickens to lay new eggs!) And who doesn't want eggs watching a sunrise in the middle of the ocean.
you can pickle your eggs
you can hard boil your eggs (put a tablespoon of vinegar in the boil to lessen shell cracks) then plunge into ice water as soon as they are cooked and done - this will make the shell so easy to peel off) Don't peel your eggs until you are ready to eat them, last longer in the shell
How to know if you have a bad egg? Just float it in a glass of water, if it sinks, it's good, if it bobs to the top-toss it in the compost heap. Alway do this if you have any doubt.
Have fun!
I read a great article by Mother Earth about this--They tried lots of ways and the best method, 7 months in to the trial, was unwashed in the fridge.

I leave unwashed eggs on my counter (as decoration partly, they make me happy). When I get a carton ready to sell or give away I wash any poopy/dirty eggs and stick them in the fridge--exception being the eggs I sent home with my sister in law 2 states over--I gave her unwashed eggs so they would stay fresh in the car
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