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AIBU to throw out eggs past their sell-by date?

72 replies

emess · 05/05/2013 13:20

They were 5-6 weeks past their sell-by date. They belonged to PIL. MIL is unwell and housebound after a fall (and hospital stay) and has no appetite. FIL is doing his best but neither of them have eaten much for weeks. I am cooking for them when I can. We visit multiple times per day plus MIL now has carers coming in night and morning. Their ages are 85 & 89. I said it was for safety but he's annoyed with me for 'wasting' food. I'm normally happy to eat stuff that's past it's date, but eggs? For an elderly couple not in the best of health? I replaced them with fresh ones, by the way, before I threw them out so it's not like I left them with nothing to eat.

OP posts:
Svrider · 05/05/2013 16:18

Cozie I agree their reaction isn't rational
I also think eating out of date eggs is v, different to out of date crisps/ biscuits
Good luck with it all op

TheChaoGoesMu · 05/05/2013 16:58

I've eaten eggs that far past the date. But I always do the float test and go by that, rather than the date stamped on the box.

Lweji · 05/05/2013 17:22

If they are kept in the fridge they last a long time.

You could have taken them home and replaced them if you were that worried.

CasperGutman · 05/05/2013 17:23

YANBU to not want your elderly loved ones to eat eggs a month and a half past their best before dates.

You would be unreasonable to throw anything away just because it had passed its sell by date, though. Unless you're a shop.

You may think this is just pedantry, but I'm sure tonnes of food gets wasted every year because people confuse sell by, best before and use by dates.

SelfconfessedSpoonyFucker · 05/05/2013 17:30

Another one that does the float test.

DH does a spin test on the countertop.

Oldraver · 05/05/2013 17:41

After having a couple of off eggs at Christmas we always float test them

LaGuardia · 05/05/2013 18:21

Since being very unwell after unwittingly eating an out of date egg, mine go straight in the bin a day after the 'use by' date.

emess · 06/05/2013 16:00

Thanks all for the perspective. Maybe I could have taken them home, tested them and used them if OK, but with all that's going on just now I just CBA. For the record, at home we often eat stuff that's well past its BB date, with no ill effects. (But I have the constitution of a horse - official). It was the combo of possibly dodgy eggs and elderly rellie in poor health that made me do it.

OP posts:
trinity0097 · 06/05/2013 16:06

Yanbu, I just threw out a couple from a big box that were a week out of date. I would rather waste something like that that could make people really ill than risk it, especially as I was about to bake a cake for hubby to take to work tomorrow!

HollyBerryBush · 06/05/2013 16:08

I have an abhorrence of wasted food.

The way I see it, eggs don't come out of a hens backside with a dates stamp on Grin. If you store eggs correctly, they keep for years ages. Small container with "water glass" in it, submerge the eggs. Rotten ones will float and you can pick them out.

Sometimes when you live in the arse end of beyond, have no supermarkets and hens stop laying over winter it's the only way to ensure a fresh supply.

AmberLeaf · 06/05/2013 16:18

Eggs that float are more than off they have been off for ages they are actually rotten

That isn't even slightly true.

Eggs float when they are older, this is because the porous shell and membrane seperate more the older they get which gives a pocket of air which makes them float.

So floating eggs are not off, they are just older.

You couldn't eat an off egg, the smell as soon as it is cracked would more than put you off.

Ive had one off egg in my lifetime and it was in date.

YABU OP, a few weeks is nothing!

But that said, you are looking after your PsIL so you have their best interests at heart.

AmberLeaf · 06/05/2013 16:20

Anyone who finds an egg that float, go and crack it into a bowl, you will see there is nothing wrong with it.

Rotten eggs smell like bad fish.

Nelly000 · 06/05/2013 16:23

In this case, elderly relatives, the OP wasn't being unreasonable.

But I can't understand people throwing eggs out when they're past their best before date.

Good website on how long you can keep things safely here.

3-5 wks out of date is ok if kept in the fridge.

Oh, and what AmberLeaf said.

Nelly000 · 06/05/2013 16:25

Correction.. Keep for 3-5 wks is ok, not necessarily 3-5 wks past all by date although you could buy them on their sell by date so it's kind of the same thing IMO

cozietoesie · 06/05/2013 16:26

Good website, Nelly. Thanks.

Nelly000 · 06/05/2013 16:28

It's my bible, cozietoesie, especially for leftovers. Smile

prettybird · 06/05/2013 16:31

You can tell if an egg is off, so in that respect YABU. The date on egg boxes is a "Best Before" date, not a "Use by"

As others have said, the "floating test" is just a reflection of an egg shell's porosity, not whether it has gone off.

If you were worried, you could have made them something that involved cooking the eggs (eg a cake) rather than, say, a boiled egg.

I think the "youth" of today Wink have got paranoid about dates and have lost the ability to judge for themselves. The nose is excellent judge of whether food has gone off. Grin

(As an aside, I am now refusing to buy my 12 year old ds Muller Corners any more - or any yoghurt for that matter - since he got sniffy about eating one that had gone two days beyond its date 'cos he had eaten them out of order - and the yoghurt had "split" slightly)

cozietoesie · 06/05/2013 16:31

I learned by being brought up by my Mum but nice to have it all in one place.


IneedAsockamnesty · 06/05/2013 16:39


It is true it means the egg has to much air in it and that's what makes eggs bad.

Eggs have a tiny air pocket inside when just laid they will stay on their side at the bottom of a bowl of water, as time passes the air bubble gets bigger this causes them to alter position by moving to a more upright position.

An egg that stand on its smallest tip up right is off an egg that floats is rotten even if it has not yet formed the smell shop eggs have so many drugs in them that the smell can be inhibited quite a lot but I still wouldn't want to eat one.

AmberLeaf · 06/05/2013 16:48

Sock. sorry but that's wrong!

An off egg is an off egg. No mistaking and I eat home laid eggs often enough to know that the same float rules/freshness/smell apply wherever they come from.

If an egg is off, it will stink, if it doesn't stink, it isn't off.

When an egg is off, the yolk breaks down and goes runny, you couldn't eat that if you tried to regardless of any drugs shop bought ones have in them.

AmberLeaf · 06/05/2013 16:51

The only rotten egg Ive ever had was fresh and in date.

AmberLeaf · 06/05/2013 16:52

By fresh, I mean freshly bought.

IneedAsockamnesty · 06/05/2013 16:53

Would you eat a black one because it didnt smell?

AmberLeaf · 06/05/2013 17:09

Black eggs usually do smell though.

Ive never had a black egg, but I understand that it is a problem with home kept chickens sometimes, they are laid like that. Nothing to do with them 'going off'

prettybird · 06/05/2013 17:17

The only black egg I have every had was also "in" date - and stank once it was cracked open.

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