The Missing Instructions on Egg Cartons

eggspirationIt ain’t necessarily so.

More and more egg companies are stamping an expiration on their cartons. As a result, more and more perfectly fresh eggs are getting thrown away.  One obvious solution is for the egg companies to offer up this simple test that anyone can do.


All they have to do is print it inside the carton.

Here it is in more detail.


So why don’t they do it? According to,

Dates on egg cartons and all other food packaging reflect food quality, not food safety. An ‘expiration’ or ‘sell-by’ date on an egg carton tells the grocer to pull the eggs if they haven’t sold by that time. A ‘best-by’ or ‘use-by’ date tells you that your eggs will still be of high quality if you use them by that date.

But experience tells anyone who has ever performed this test otherwise. More often than not, eggs remain fresh long past the expiration date.

  1. Steve’s avatar

    I have a more simple approach. In our house eggs never last past the date printed on the carton. Whether for breakfast or in a recipe, those eggs get eaten. It is nice to know the technique being shared here.

    Also, as a good preventative, that my mother taught me. It is good practice to crack each individual egg in to a small bowl before adding it to a recipe, to other eggs, or to a pan. That way you can inspect each egg before using it.

    (It would be nice if there was a link on this page to share it on FB.)

  2. Michael A. III’s avatar

    All good suggestions, Steve. Thank you.

  3. kim’s avatar

    I use this method myself for my own farm eggs but I do think the egg companies PREFER us to throw away perfectly good eggs so we will go buy more…… sooner. It’s up to us the consumers to learn about things and practice what we learn and then spread it around to others to help them learn and so on. Just like you did. Thank

  4. Victoria Nazario’s avatar

    To know if an egg is hard boil and done it’s to take the egg after you think it’s done and stand it striaight up and spin it like a top. If it falls to the sides that means that it’s not a hard boil egg yet. It need to spin like a top for it to be hard boil.

    Thank you for all you information on fresh eggs.