God vs Science
Effect of Storage Conditions on the Quality Attributes of Shell (Table) Eggs

How to Store Fresh Eggs

An old article - BUT USEFUL!

By the MOTHER EARTH NEWS editors 

November/December 1977

Each set of 360 eggs was then further divided into 10 separate batches of three dozen each: [1] a control group that was left sitting out at room temperature, [2] a batch that was kept under "controlled refrigeration" . . . that is, 36 eggs which were put into an airtight container and stored at a constant 35 degrees degrees Fahrenheit to 40 degrees Fahrenheit, [3] a group that was completely covered by a solution of 9 parts water and 1 part sodium silicate, also known as "waterglass", [4] a group that was submerged in a 16 parts water/2 parts lime/1 part salt solution, [5] a batch that was packed in lard, [6] a group that was merely coated with lard, [7] three dozen that were coated with vaseline, [8] 36 eggs that were packed in dry sand, [9] three dozen that were packed in wet sand, and [10] 36 eggs that were packed in dry sawdust. Except for the refrigerated batch, all the groups of eggs were stored at a room temperature which varied from 65 degrees Fahrenheit to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

Testing Egg Freshness Once a Month

Our experiment was set up on February 4, 1977 and was designed to run for a full year of regular monthly "look, sniff, taste, and texture" tests. It very quickly became apparent, however, that some of the "preservation" methods we were trying were worse than no attempts at preservation at all. The eggs (both fertile and unfertile) buried in both the wet sand and sawdust looked bad, smelled bad, had lost their taste, and had runny textures just one month after being "preserved". Even the control groups — eggs which were just allowed to lay out at room temperature with nothing done to them — were better than that. Conclusion after only four weeks: Trying to store eggs in either wet sand or dry sawdust is counterproductive. Forget it. Anything else — even nothing at all works better.

Surprisingly enough, the control eggs — although slightly mushy and musty — were still edible a full eight weeks after our tests began. Except for one El Stinko water glassed egg (which must have had an unnoticed crack in its shell at the beginning of the experiment), however, the other seven batches still in the running were all much better. Which meant that the "preservation" methods they represented really were preserving the hen fruit to one extent or another.

Believe it or not, our controls (both fertile and unfertile) were hanging in there yet after another full four weeks had passed. If we'd had our druthers, understand, we'd have eaten something else . . . but, under survival conditions, we could have lived on the completely unprotected 90-day-old eggs if we'd have had to. Some of the other groups, on the other hand, were becoming a little disappointing. Most of them (even the refrigerated ones) had more or less runny whites, one of the refrigerated store-boughts smelled bad, all the vaseline-coated eggs were marginal, one of the fertilized eggs packed in dry sand had a bad sulphur taste, and a store-bought kept in water glass was very definitely bad.