The Great Egg Debate

What is the difference between brown eggs and white eggs? Many people believe that brown eggs are generally more healthy and nutritious. However, when you throw in the “cage free” or “free range”, what do you choose? It can be extremely overwhelming when there are so many different terms and theories out there. This post is here to inform you on what each term means, why brown eggs are brown, and why white eggs are white.

Brown eggs are brown. White eggs are white. Brown or white, they are the same on the inside. Some chickens lay brown eggs, and some lay white eggs, and each egg tastes the same and has the same amount of nutrients.

So how did brown eggs and white eggs even come about? White-feathered chickens with white ear lobes lay white eggs and red-feathered ones with red ear lobes lay brown eggs (this may not apply to all breeds). And besides that, there are certain chickens that even lay speckled eggs and blue eggs.(huffington post)

Cage Free Eggs

Cage-free eggs are eggs from hens that are not raised in cages, in an open barn. The hens have bedding material such as pine shavings on the floor, and nest boxes to lay their eggs.  Although they’re not in cages, they may still be very close to other hens.

Free Range

Free-range eggs are laid from hens that can roam around outside.

Organic Eggs

Organic eggs are laid from hens that may be kept in any kind of caging system, but generally are cage free. They eat an organic feed and don’t receive vaccines or antibiotics.

“In order to qualify for USDA organic certification, the grains used for the hens’ diets must be produced on land that has been free from the use of toxic and persistent chemical pesticides and fertilizers for at least three years. Genetically engineered crops are not permitted, and hens must be maintained without hormones, antibiotics, and other intrusive drugs.” (webmd)

Vegetarian Eggs

Vegetarian eggs are laid from hens that are only fed a vegetarian diet — free from meat or fish by-products. These hens are typically kept inside and in cages.

Pasteurized Eggs

Pasteurized eggs are eggs in their shell that have been put through a pasteurization process where they are heated to 140 degrees Fahrenheit for three and a half minutes. Eggs are not required to be pasteurized. Pasteurization completely kills bacteria without cooking the egg. The process can also be done for packaged egg whites used in cooking. Eating pasteurized eggs is recommended for young children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems so they can reduce the risk of contracting a salmonella infection.

So what eggs do you buy? That’s up to you. No egg is “safer” than other ones. Choose the egg you feel fits you best, or try a different type of egg and see what you prefer (although, all eggs taste just about the same).

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