Tuesday, December 8, 2009

How Long Do Fresh Eggs Last?

Ever wonder how long fresh eggs last? After being asked this question and not really knowing the answer I finally did some research and came up with these interesting facts.

  • Eggs can remain edible for even longer than a month, but freshness (egg yolk that sits firm and high, and a thick viscous egg white) will be noticeably less after two weeks.

    If eggs start out as Grade AA, they remain AA for only two weeks if properly refrigerated. After that, they'll be Grade A for another 2 weeks.
  • Here is a true test of freshness: Get a bowl of cold water. Put the whole egg in the water. If it sinks, it's fresh; if it floats to the top, it is old. It will kind of lay almost on its side. You can see the age of it by how much it floats. It's a good idea to do this test before selling any eggs if you suspect they are older than two weeks.

    However, by putting the eggs in water, you wash away the bloom from the egg, a protective layering that prevents bacteria from entering the egg. Therefore, unless you are not expecting to keep the eggs for very long, you should not put them in water. If you must wash the eggs, use HOT running water.
  • Farmers have 30 days from the day an egg is laid to get it to stores. Then, the stores have another 30 days to sell the eggs. The USDA recommends a maximum of 5 weeks in your refrigerator before you discard your eggs. What does this all boil down to? On April 1, you could be eating an egg that was laid on Christmas.
  • Many eggs in the U.S. get to market within a few days of laying. If there is a USDA shield on the carton, it must have at least a Julian pack date. A use-by is not required, but if used, it must not be more than 45 days from packing. If the eggs are not distributed interstate, state laws will apply and are variable.
  • Keep in mind that farmers generally get their eggs to stores within a week, and both the "pack date" and "sell by" date are stamped onto the carton. The numbers run from 1-365, depending on the day of the year. Lastly, there is a big difference in taste between farm fresh eggs and week-old eggs. If you want the freshest eggs, you can buy from a local farmer.

  • There is an expiration date on the carton. If in doubt, put the egg in water. If it floats, do not use it.
So, now you know. I feel smarter, how about you?

I do have a limited number of fresh eggs available if you are interested in buying farm fresh eggs. I sell them for $2/dozen. Let me know if you are interested!

A couple of weeks ago I found this monstrous egg in one of the nesting boxes. It was huge and had a double yoke. Crazy... I felt sorry for the chicken who laid that egg. Get a ruler out and see how big a 3 inch egg is!! The two on the left are regular sized eggs, like a large and an extra large. The monster egg was even bigger than an extra large egg on the egg scale!!

Then this week I found this puny little blue egg. I wonder what was up with that?

Did the chicken get interrupted while she was laying or did she just get bored with the process and decided to call it quits before the egg was the proper size. Guess I need to do some more research on exactly how a hen develops an egg and the whole process. I'll fill you in on what all I find out. Or even better, if you are an egg expert, why don't you fill me in! Leave a comment or two!

The weather is still cold and snowy and we are still trying to get our corn harvested. Our trip to Japan to see Nick, our oldest who is stationed at Yokota Air Force Base near Tokyo, is fast approaching!!! Yikes, I hope we can get everything taken care of before we go!

Think we'll have omelets for dinner tonight! Thanks chickies for all your hard work and the fruits of your labor!

Y'all come back now, ya hear?!?

(As always... make sure you include your name in your comment, unless you truly want to be anonymous and if you want to see a photo full sized, click on the photo. To get back to the blog, click on your browsers back button.)


  1. I remember that I was surprised at how long our eggs lasted when we had layers. I also never washed our eggs. I think we kind of sanded them or just wiped them with paper towels. We didn't sell the really dirty ones. We used them ourselves. That little egg looks like the Guinea hen eggs we used to have!

  2. This whole article was copied (stolen) word for word from another source- you need to cite sources when you steal content.

    1. You are correct, I should have cited my source for the egg facts, but you are also incorrect by stating that the WHOLE article was copied word for word. The only thing that was copied was the facts about the eggs.

  3. Thanks for your information and long as you don't profit from another's research there is nothing wrong with posting it here.

  4. Thank you for the info on how long eggs will keep,, we have a bumper crop of egg layers this year and the info has come in very handy.

  5. Thanks for this post, really helpful info regarding how long fresh eggs will last as we are getting a back log and wouldn't want to provide our friends with old eggs!

  6. No harm in copying or stealing as long as there is no profit as mention by earlier post.

  7. Thanks for the info Im buying my first farm eggs this weekend so decided to read about them!! This helps

  8. Yes thank you. As for the copyright police... WHO cares! It's the Internet!

  9. Exactly the information I was looking for...thank you

  10. The lack of an identifiable financial profit doesn't necessarily make the copying of the work of others and passing it off as your own either legally or morally right. Geez people, when did these simple ethical issues become so difficult? And citing the source doesn't necessarily solve the problem either.

  11. In reference to the copyright police, there is nothing wrong with passing on this information, especially when it is useful and harms no one. So, get over it already and quit surfing the web for copyright violators, get a real life.

  12. I'm fairly certain that facts about how long eggs last aren't solely owned by any person...the original writer likely got their info after doing research as well. Out of courtesy, the original website should have been sited, however I don't think anyone has a 'copyright' on this kind of information.

    Thanks for posting. It was easy to find and the information I needed.