Fresh eggs are often cleanly deposited in a nesting box but sometimes they are soiled with manure and dirt. Cleaning and storing fresh eggs is an easy process that only takes a few seconds. Keep your cleaning supplies handy and your eggs will shine in the carton. After washing, you must store and preserve the eggs.
Inspect the Eggs
Collect the eggs from your coop and safely place them in a carton. Add new bedding to the nesting boxes as necessary. The eggs are less likely to break when laid in fresh, soft bedding. Designate the carton for unwashed eggs only. Inspect each egg for cracks and breaks in the shell. Dispose of any broken eggs and set the remainder aside for cleaning.
Cleaning Without Water
Cleaning is possible without water and many prefer the method. Keep a piece of fine sand paper or steel wool near your nesting boxes or egg storage space. Lightly brush any dirt, grime or feces from the eggs with the steel wool or sand paper. Transfer the eggs to your storage carton and label with the date as you process and scrub each egg.
Cleaning and sanitizing the eggs is not necessary but some egg collectors use the method as a defense against bacteria. The shell will however protect the egg from feces and dirt. Rinse the eggs under fresh water for several seconds to remove dirt and feces. Lightly rub the eggs with a kitchen sponge for stubborn spots. Quickly dip the eggs in a bowl of water with 1 teaspoon of bleach. Pat them dry with a paper towel and transfer to your storage carton.
Storing and Sealing Eggs
Store the eggs at room temperature or in a refrigerator. Room temperature storage is adequate and the eggs will keep for several weeks. Eggs washed in water will go bad before unwashed eggs. The water washed the natural bloom coating that preserves the eggs. Sealing eggs in lard or coating with wax also will preserve eggs longer. Ideally, you will consume the eggs within a few weeks of them being laid.
Keep all of your eggs in cartons labeled with the collection dates. Avoid eggs that are stored for more than one month. Always smell older eggs before cooking or consumption. Bad eggs have a rotten smell and they are very runny. Immediately dispose of questionable or rotten eggs.