The freshest eggs have the best flavor and will last longer. Here’s an insider tip on picking the freshest carton of eggs at the grocery store: look at the three-digit code printed on the carton, not the sell-by date.
Because the sell-by date for eggs in a supermarket (with U.S.D.A. inspection) can be up to 45 days after the packing date, [The Eastman Egg Company] has a quick and easy way to check for freshness: the Julian date. Every egg carton has a code printed on its side, and the last 3 digits of this code are called the Julian date. The code uses a number from 001 to 365 to correspond to a day of the year and indicate when they were packaged. For example, 001 is January 1st and 365 is December 31st. To find the freshest eggs, select the highest number you can find (keeping in mind the numbers wrap around in January).
Head over to Food52 for more tips from the Eastman Egg Company, particularly when it comes to building the perfect egg sandwich.