What you need to know about Shell Eggs in food service.


When I conduct my Food Manager trainings the subject of eggs comes up a lot! Here are the Maryland Regulations,  from where to store them to what documentation you need to keep for inspections.



  • Only purchase from an approved or licensed company that is authorized to sell shell eggs.  
  • Only Grade A or higher eggs are to be used.


  • The eggs should be inspected for cracks, reject any cracked eggs.
  • The temperature around the shell egg should be 45 degrees or lower
  •  COMAR states: 

(3) The invoice or equivalent record required in §A(2) of this regulation contains the following information written in English:

(a) Name and address of the seller and buyer;

(b) Date of delivery;

(c) Grade and size of eggs delivered; and

(d) Quantity of eggs sold in number by grade and size;

  • If the grade and size are not on invoice you need to keep this documentation from the egg carton or packaging.  Documentation needs to be saved for 90 days.


  • Eggs can be stored at 45 degrees, but unless you have a separate unit they are typically stored at 41 degrees or below.
  • According to the National Environmental Health Association, eggs are stored on the second shelf of the unit with seafood and below RTE foods.


  • Eggs that will be prepped and not cooked or not cooked to correct temperatures, should be pasteurized as a good practice.
  • Pooled eggs (shell eggs cracked and combined together) should always have temperature control.  Do not leave egg washes setting out.  It is a good practice to use a pasteurized egg when temperature abuse may occur by staff.   For example, omelet bars or egg washes for chicken or seafood.


  • Eggs for immediate service: 145 degrees for 15 seconds.
  • Eggs for hot hold, in kitchen or buffet.  This includes eggs used in another dish that will be hot held. 155 for 15 seconds.


  • If you are going to serve an undercooked egg or a dish that contains an undercooked egg this is the warning that must be posted clearly for the customer ordering food to see:  “Consuming raw or undercooked animal foods may increase your risk of contracting a foodborne illness, especially if you have certain medical conditions.”
  • Never serve an undercooked shell egg, one that is not pasteurized,  in a high risk facility.