To wash or not to wash, and if so,when.


In the Brooder
8 Years
Apr 6, 2011
Fuquay-Varina, NC
I know several posts have been put here about washing eggs and how long they will keep. I presently don't wash mine so I can keep them on my counter and to be honest, they are the cleanest looking eggs. My girls always go in the nest box and besides a little blood smear every now and then, they look perfect. I've even had people think they were fake because they looked so good. So, my question is this, Do you always wash them before use or is it even necessary? I haven't been, but I've read several posts saying they will leave them out, but then wash them before using them. Just wondering if I should start doing that also?
I always wash mine (with organic egg wash solution and warm running water) and store in the refrigerator. They stay fresh longer in the refrigerator, and even when they look clean, they've laid in the nest boxes where chickens who've walked on all kinds of nasty things have been. I've read the zillion threads about this on BYC, and I've read nothing that has given me a good reason not to wash and refrigerate. So that's what works for me.
It really matters on the conditions of the nest boxes, some folks let them get pretty bad and the eggs laid there are dirty. I keep plenty of clean straw in the boxes and the eggs come out of them in pristine condition. If every now and then one is laid on the coop/run floor and it's soiled a bit I wash it before storing. Clean eggs are more appealing to sell and or eat, I just don't like keeping dirty eggs for anything including incubation, so I wash them if they need it.
For what it's worth - my eggs almost always "look" clean because the nest boxes are kept clean. Still, the chickens have to get in the nest box to lay the eggs - and they kick the straw/shavings around with their feet to "nest" before they lay the egg. So - despite how clean an egg looks and regardless of how clean the nest is kept - there will be germs. I'm a germaphobe - so I wash the eggs when I collect them - even though they look perfectly clean.
That works for me and keeps me from worrying about it. Many people don't wash them - and that works for them. Same thing with refrigeration. I guess it boils down to personal preference.
Interesting. My nest boxes are clean so I guess that is why the eggs always look clean. I prefer not to wash them only because I believe the natural bloom that the chickens put on them is better to keep them fresh than washing and putting in the frig where they could pick up any odor or anything in there. But then, that is just my opinion.

I guess since they look clean, I never really thought about it before reading all the posts here. So, if anyone doesn't wash them, would you wash before use or not?

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