Shell Eggs

Julian Date Table

Julian Date Tables for Leap Year and Non-Leap Year (MS Excel, .xlsx)

Use these tables to determine "Use By:" or "Sell By: " date based on your pack date.  Here's how:

1. Choose the Leap Year or Non-Leap Year tab on the spreadsheet.

2. Find the Julian day number for your pack date -- the month and day on which you candled, graded, and packed the eggs.

3. Add 30 to the Julian number for your pack date.

4. Find that pack date + 30 number on the table.

5. Find the month and day associated with the pack date + 30 number.  That is your "Use By:" or "Sell By:" date.

Fact Sheet for Buyers:

Sale of Locally Raised Eggs to Food Facilities
Minnesota Department of Agriculture

Fact Sheet for Farmers Selling Eggs:

Selling Minnesota Shell Eggs
Minnesota Local Food Advisory Committee


Free-Range eggs and Pasture-Raised eggs: Consumers generally expect that these are eggs from hens that spend a lot of time in a large outdoor area, although they may be fenced in to protect them from predators and thus not totally "free."  The USDA standards for labeling of free-range or free-roaming poultry require that the birds have access to the outdoors, but do not require the birds to actually use that access. Farmers should be prepared to explain to customers what "free-range" means in their poultry operation.

USDA labeling standards for meat or poultry:  

Certified Humane label standards for free-range and pasture-raised poultry: 

Omega-3 eggs: Research has shown that including about 10% flaxseed in laying hens' diet results in eggs with a high level of omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are a desirable component of a heart-healthy diet. Eggs labeled as high in omega-3 must be tested to verify their omega-3 composition -- eggs cannot be labeled as high in omega-3 solely on the basis of the hens' diet.

Organic eggs are produced in compliance with the National Organic Program standards.


Contact the Minnesota Department of Agriculture

The ultimate source of information on egg sale regulations is the Dairy and Meat Inspection Program of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. That division is responsible for the regulation of egg sales in Minnesota, and the inspectors on staff there work directly with farmers and processors.

Telephone number for Dairy and Meat Inspection Program: 651-201-6300.

Meat, Poultry, and Egg Inspection Web Page:

Questions? Contact:

Jane Jewett,