What is the shelf life of free range farm eggs?
By Charlene from Chalfont, PA
To get an accurate answer, which probably none of us can do, consult an agricultural department of a local college or a tech school that has an agricultural school. I think it would depend on a lot of things. The temperature on the day the eggs were laid and how long the egg stayed warm before you gathered it. I am assuming the eggs would be refrigerated right away. At egg farms I think the egg rolls right down into refrigeration. I used to have hens and I gathered the eggs every morning. We used them so fast that I never thought about how long they could be stored.
I have organic, free-range eggs on my farm. I have kept eggs as long as four months in the refrigerator and they were still like fresh when I used them. The key to this is that the eggs can not have been washed. There is a natural waxy coating on an egg that makes the shell impermeable. Nothing can get through that coating, not water, air, feces, nothing. So we don't wash our eggs until I'm either ready to use them or sell them. I'm sure you could ask the farm how the eggs are handled. Usually, "professional" farms have strict codes they must follow and will probably have a large enough turnover to not need to hold eggs and so will wash them right away, a smaller farm may not wash until you're wanting to buy. Ask.
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