A carton full of eggs
The Reason Farmers Market Eggs Aren't Refrigerated
To understand why farmers' market eggs are sold at room temperature and completely safe to eat, it’s crucial to know first how eggs are processed in the United States.
Due to federal government regulations, all laid eggs produced by large U.S. poultry farms need to be washed with water that is no less than 90 degrees Fahrenheit and a detergent.
They’re then dried, packaged, and distributed to stores. This process eliminates any dirt and chicken feces adhering to the egg, which can carry harmful bacteria like salmonella.
However, this process also destroys a thin, invisible membrane called the "cuticle" or "bloom" that naturally occurs on eggs and keeps microbes from entering the porous eggshells.
While washed grocery store eggs have to be kept cold to prevent bacterial growth, unwashed farmers market eggs, with their cuticles intact, are safe to store at room temperature.
That said, unless you are planning to use up your farmers’ market eggs almost immediately after purchase, consider storing them at low temperatures to help extend their shelf life.