How to Store and Clean Eggs

Fresh eggs can last up to six months! Yes, that sounds like a long time.. Keep in mind that the eggs you buy from the store are often a full month old by the time they get on the shelf,. Between giving grocery stores time to sell them and you time to eat them, the store-bought eggs are often months old by the time they become an omelet.

What Is a Bloom?

Just before a hen lays her egg, her body adds the last and most protective coating to the shell: the bloom. The bloom is wet when applied, and it quickly dries when it lands in a nest.

Most farmers who keep eggs for themselves leave this protective coating on the egg. It is a protective shield, covering all the pores so that bacteria and outside gases or chemicals cannot enter the egg while also trapping moisture inside the egg. The result is a full, rich egg with a bright orange yolk.

In fact, the bloom on a fresh egg is so protective that eggs that still have their bloom can be left out at room temperature and still be edible. However, once the egg is washed or wiped down too hard, the bloom disappears and the egg needs to be refrigerated. Ever wonder why eggs in Europe aren’t refrigerated? They still have their blooms!

Storing at room temperature:

As long as the bloom is intact, fresh eggs can sit out at room temperature for about a month. The bloom will still be intact as long as the shell doesn’t have any apparent damage and you have not washed the egg (which washes off the bloom). If you store them at room temperature you do not need to wash the egg but they won’t look as nice.

Soring in the fridge:

Most people don’t like putting poop in the fridge, so if you decide to refrigerate eggs, take a look at them and wash them first as needed. You can wash eggs by lightly buffing the dirt off with fine-grit sandpaper, wiping them with a damp towel, or by gently rubbing them under warm running water if it’s really dirty. Soap and other cleaning agents aren’t really necessary; water does the trick. Some people who have used soap to clean eggs complain that it made the eggs taste like soap. Towel-dry the eggs as needed and put them in a carton or bowl to store in the fridge. Do not clean your eggs by allowing them to sit in water or by running them under cold water. Coldwater causes the contents of the egg to shrink, which can suck bacteria in. Allowing eggs to sit in water makes it easier for bacteria to penetrate the shell, which increases your chances of getting ill.

some contents are taken from Keeping Healthy Chickens by Carissa Bonham