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Egg Storage

leebartonleebarton Junior Member
edited November 2010 in "Off Your Chest"
I am a US expat living and working in England for the last 3 years. Common practice in the UK is to store eggs at room temperature. In the grocery stores, egg cartons are stored on shelves with other non refrigerated goods. When I questioned this with my UK friends, they state that you are not suppose to refrigerate eggs.

This is contrary to all the egg storage advice I can find on the web and the practice I have always followed in the US.

For the last year, I have simply left my eggs on the kitchen counter and not refrigerated. Granted, I only buy a half dozen at a time and will use within a week. I have never had an issue with spoiled eggs.

Just curious what others have to say about not refrigerating eggs???



  • chilliwomanchilliwoman Junior Member
    edited March 2010
    I never use the fridge as it changes the texture of the whites in my opinion. We have lots of eggs from our birds and have always just put them on a shelf in our pantry and never had a problem even if they are a couple of weeks old when eaten
  • thegoodlifethegoodlife Junior Member
    edited April 2010
    I live in Australia and eggs are not refrigerated here either.

    It gets pretty hot here (40'C /110'F outside air temp in summer) so I refrigerate the eggs to increase their lifespan. At normal room temp I would think that eggs must have a normal lifespan of a couple of months at least - a box of eggs usually has an expiry date of 4-6 weeks from the time I buy them (sitting neatly in the bread section) - and I would think that it takes a couple of weeks to get to the supermarket from lay.

    I have heard that the reason that eggs are refrigerated in the US is because the eggs are washed and irradiated there. Apparently this removes the protective natural antibiotic layer on the outside of the egg.
    But I think the eggs here are washed too (they are clean and stamped) so I don't know if that is true. Maybe its just habit afterall ;)
  • BaltiAngelBaltiAngel Senior Member
    edited April 2010
    Yes, once that layer is gone, then the egg is vulnerable to invasion, my mum sells duck eggs which she has to wash as they lay all over the place, keeps them in the fridge, and we advise that the eggs should be eaten within 2 weeks. But duck eggs do not have the same protective layer as hen eggs. I keep mine in the kitchen on little racks, and generally eat them within the month...if they are around that long.!
    I think that the egg producers are afraid of being sued for a case of bug related illness, and thats why they may advise refrigeration..
  • Farmer.abiFarmer.abi Junior Member
    edited April 2010
    hey :) you dont have to refrigerate them at all the only reason why people do is because there is a storage compartment for them, i just keep them in a small bowl on the side and use the eggs accoring to the date they are layed :)
  • sandiesbrahmassandiesbrahmas Super Moderator
    edited May 2010
    I do both, store in the fridge and store on a larder shelf, depending upon where there is space. The eggs will pretty well all be fertile due to the fact that my girls free range with 4 very healthy cocks.
    I use eggs for both eating and for incubation (stored pointy end down) and they are good for both activities. If I am using eggs from the fridge for incubation I tend to use ones which are a few days old and allow them to achieve room temperature and then leave them by the side of the incubator for at least 12 hours before starting the incubation. hatch rates have been good, so I can confirm that this works too.
    I suspect that eggs for eating keep slightly longer at the colder fridge temperatures, but eggs at room temperature (very variable due to time of year) seem to keep very well for up to a month,
    I wipe my eggs if very dirty, but do not wash them
  • missbaritonemissbaritone Junior Member
    edited May 2010
    I don't refrigerate my eggs either. However I make wedding cakes and as such my kitchen is registered with the enviromental health department. When the inspector came out to do his inspection of my kitchen he was horrified that I had my eggs in a rack on the bench.

    It turns out that I can't use my own eggs in my cakes I can only use eggs I've bought with the date stamp on them. When I bring them home I must store them in the refrigerator and temperature must be less than 5 degrees.

    When I pointed out that I would have to buy those eggs from a supermarket where they weren't stored in a refrigerator he said that was ok , The supermarkets don't have to refrigerate but the rules are I have to put them in a fridge when I bring them home
  • sandiesbrahmassandiesbrahmas Super Moderator
    edited June 2010
    Don't you just love the logic of the authorities to which we answer? Supermarket eggs are almost certainly from birds who are not kept to the standards that most of us would find acceptable.
    I learnt that the organic eggs that are widely available in shops often only have the size of an A4 sheet of paper to call their own. So, they may be fed organic food, but what kind of a life do they have?
    My organic free-rangers have 18 acres to wander.
  • splash123splash123 Junior Member
    edited August 2010

    As for the chicken eggs, a cool temperature is necessary for avoiding contamination. Leebarton was right. Beyond the packed date, a fresh shell egg can be stored as fresh being refridgerated for the next 75 days and hard cooked egg can be stored for 1 week. in a fresh egg, you can see a cloudiness in raw white which is carbondioxide. It proves that the egg is fresh. If an egg is kept out in room temperature, this co2 will be lost. in few days, the greenish cast in raw white which is riboflavin will also be lost. Basically, its just a matter of fact that we cant get eggs immediately once it is graded. it could take atleast 48 hours to reach retail stores on completion of washing, sanitizing, oiling, grading n packing. It could be a question whether we are eating healthy eggs or just eggs.

    So lets opt for eggs stored in fridge ( not on the fridge's door but nearby freezer to have more cooling. store it in cartons as available in retail market as eggs absorbs easily. to avoid doubts, lets cook or boil it well and eat. And now what comes first, chicken or egg?.

  • Aaron A AardvarkAaron A Aardvark Junior Member
    edited September 2010
    All shop bought eggs in the UK must have 'Consumer advice' written on them. 9 times out of 10 it is 'CONSUMER ADVICE: KEEP REFRIGERATED AFTER PURCHASE.' I did hear though that this is due to a poor translation from the EU directive written French. The correct advice should be KEEP CHILLED AFTER PURCHASE.
  • edited September 2010
    I store mine on one of these,


    on top of a marble chopping board, so that they are fairly cool. But then I'm in the far North of Scotland so temperatures over 18C are considered a heat wave LOL

    I think if it got very hot I would be more comfortable storing them in the fridge...but I guess that's only because we've been brought up doing that.
  • toulacrosstoulacross Senior Member
    edited October 2010
    i keep eggs out on the worktop and eggs in the fridge if i'm running out of room if my girls are laying well. I don't see a difference in the taste of them either. My dad keeps his eggs in the fridge as he has a large storage compartment for them but this is the only reason.
    The difference i think is they keep longer in the fridge but i have eaten eggs that are 3 weeks old when they have been left out and they are still yum yum yummy!
    Oh and i only wipe the muck/ mud off them and dont wash them.
    My dobbie doesnt seem to care either as i collect about half a dozen from my girls the other week left them on the bench to come into the house as i forgot something in the pen, came back and he had eaten all 6! Needless to say he had a dicky tummy the next day eating 6 raw eggs! Dont think he's learn his lesson though as he's always checking out the egg basket tho i've learnt my lesson with him!
  • chickensRcoolchickensRcool Member
    edited November 2010
    you should always refrigerate your eggs to make sure they won't rott.
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