Do Grocery Store Workers Repackage Eggs In Egg Cartons

The thread IMHO about eggs got me to thinking.

Now when I go to buy eggs, I open the package and look to make sure none is broken. And if I see one broken egg, I put back the carton and hunt for another.

Now I am thinking OK, this carton of 12 eggs minus 1 broken so that leaves 11 good eggs.

So am I right in thinking that at some point, the stockboy comes along and removes all the egg cartons that have one or two (or whatever) broken eggs and then rearranges the unbroken eggs in a new carton so there are twelve unbroken eggs again?

Or is this not correct? It has to be right? Or maybe not?

I don’t know about someone at the store, but if I open a carton and find one broken egg, and open a second carton to find one broken egg, I’ll swap the broken egg from the second carton with one of the good eggs from the first carton. Then I put the first carton back in the cooler, but I’ll set it down at an angle, in some way apart from the rest as sort of an unofficial sign that it’s got broken eggs in it.

I don’t know about grocery stores or their policies, but when I worked at a convenience store where we carried a small number of grocery items including a few dozen eggs…one of my stocking chores was to check the egg cartons and remove/rearrange any broken eggs I came across.

I buy eggs in bulk at the grocery store. They come in little pallets of 60 eggs (30 to a layer, two layers) wrapped in plastic. Occasionally I will come a cross a cracked or broken egg somewhere in the middle (that can’t be viewed from the edges) but the way they are packaged, there is no way to be sure or for the grocery employees to check or rearrange the cartons.

If I am buying only a dozen or a carton of 18, I will open it, check the eggs and if one is broken I will remove it and replace it with an unbroken egg from a neighboring carton. I am not sure if I am “supposed” to do that or not…

Yes they do.

And then they take the cartons full of cracked eggs out back and throw them as hard as possible against the back wall of the dumpster.

I swap eggs, too, but I always leave the carton with the broken eggs in it open, so other customers will be able to see that someone’s been handling those eggs.

Why swap the eggs? I just leave the carton with a broken egg in it open, and check another carton.

Because then instead of two egg cartons, each with a broken egg in it, you’ve got one carton of all good eggs and one carton with two broken eggs.

It all depends on how damaged the eggs in question are. A little crack at the top? We’ll either swap them around as you suggest, or if there’s only one damaged box just remove the cracked egg and reduce-to-clear.

If it’s a super duper ready scrambled egg inside the box, we’ll bin the box. It’s a health hazard.

A small request please folks. If you do find a box with damaged eggs in please tell a member of staff. Otherwise you just know someone else will put it in their trolley without checking and trail egg all over the floor.
Oh and while we’re at it, yes I know our frozen pizzas are cheaper than the fresh made ones you’ve got in your basket. No that doesn’t mean it’s fine for you to just dump the fresh ones in the freezer well and walk away. If we don’t spot them before they freeze we have to chuck’em*.

Thank you for your co-opreation…

*Or I might be having pizza for tea.

As someone who is currently succumbed to working in grocery, namely dairy, I can say that this right here is very true.

If there is a broken egg inside of the container I throw the whole container away, very hard, in the back of the dumpster. It’s what my boss taught me to do. A lot of times I can pick out the broken ones cuz people will put them back a wee bit askew. Also it discolored the carton, so I can see it without opening it up.

Our store saved broken cartons of eggs and got credit for them with the outdated ones. We did the same for dairy like milk that was spoiled or outdated. After we got credit the stuff was disposed of.

I remember once I was at a small chain grocery store and for some reason (a small riot I had somehow missed?) they had very few cartons of eggs and most seemed to contain at least one or two broken ones. I finally found a single carton of unbroken eggs, but before I left the area, I showed the damage to the stockboy, remarking, “Maybe you can piece together one good carton.” He looked sincerely shocked, and gasped, “Oh, no, ma’am, we’re not allowed to do that. It’s illegal!” I wasn’t clear as to whether it really was illegal or if that’s just what the manager had told them.

I wonder what the health department says about it. Vaccines are grown in eggs, and I would hesitate to buy any that had been in a carton with a broken one.

I’m pretty sure vaccines aren’t grown in the same eggs sold in stores.

Why’s that? What’s the worst that could happen? (Hopefully, not my famous last words!)

How often do people actually open two cartons in a row with broken eggs? In the decade or so I’ve been shopping for myself, I think I’ve only found one carton with a broken egg in it. I usually don’t even bother to check them at all, since broken ones are so rare. Or is Albertson’s just a lot more vigilant about this than most stores?

I go one up on all of you. I open and wiggle the eggs. Because, unlike lucky Chronos, I’ve taken home eggs that looked uncracked only to find them stuck to the bottom of the carton by unseen leakage.

It never occurred to me to switch eggs. I think if I were caught doing that, the store employee would flip.

That’s definitely what my mom did when I was a kid. I always assumed that eventually the store would end up with an unofficial “broken egg package” and just throw it out.

Myself, I very rarely find a broken egg, and if I do the next package never has one. Of course, I assume any egg packages that are on top and kind of askew will have broken eggs in them, so I look in other ones. I think egg shipping and packaging must have improved since I was a kid, because the eggs I see these days are so rarely broken.

Throwing the carton hard against the side of the dumpster – is that to discourage dumpster diving?

I rarely find two in a row, but it happens. I buy eggs every week, and I’d say that I find a package with a broken egg in it at least once a month.

Way back when I worked at a grocery store, smashing things in the dumpster was more a matter of personal satisfaction than any intelligent reason. Throwing things hard and watching them break does wonders for a bad day. It’s a good question though and I wouldn’t be surprised if other stores made it a policy.