22 August 2010


some years ago, when i would occasionally buy a dozen eggs from the grocery store, i was completely lost when trying to figure out the difference between eggs labeled "cage free", "free range", "organic" and "omega-3".

i was also unsure how i was supposed to decide among all the providers.

with the recent salmonella outbreak, traced to two large producers in Iowa, i'm seeing that it doesn't really matter whose branding you like best.

Wednesday's recall covers eggs branded as Albertsons, Farm Fresh, James Farms, Glenview, Mountain Dairy, Ralph's, Boomsma, Lund, Kemps and Pacific Coast [...] The earlier recall covered the Lucerne, Albertson, Mountain Dairy, Ralph's, Boomsma, Sunshine, Hillandale, Trafficanda, Farm Fresh, Shoreland, Lund, Dutch Farms and Kemps brands

wow, that's a lot of brands from two producers. i wonder if there are additional brands that haven't (yet) been recalled.

the gf and i lucky to have quality egg producers available to us every Saturday. i don't know what i'd be doing otherwise.


JustJoeP said...

I do not have a nice local egg supplier, so Traci and I do the following:
Free Range, Organic.

Don't believe "cage free". 10,000 chickens in a dark barn, wallowing in their own filth, is not healthy, but it is "cage free".

Omega-3 - Ok, you;re feeding them Omega 3s.. mixed in with.... vitamins and dead chicken meal? (for protein) Antibiotics? (which breed antibiotic resistant bacteria)

Free Range, Organic - certified Organic by a reputable certification organization.

Mass produced millions of eggs are "Franken Foods" as far as I am concerned. We try to get our eggs from Trader Joes, when we can, but we also will get them from the organic sections at the local Safeway or Frys, when we have to.

Yes, they are $5 a dozen, but a week in the hospital is alot more expensive.

JustJoeP said...

And if you want to eat Omega 3s, don't worry about them in the eggs. Take 5 grams of Omega 3 fish oil a day. It's good for you. =)

Ame said...

actually - if the chickens are truly free range, they eat enough bugs and other stuff to have a high omega 3 ratio.

The problem with the store bought eggs is that there is no way to verify if "free range" is really free range. see here As the USDA has not enforced any of the labeling standards only that the chicken's have "access to the outdoors" which can be anything from a open window to larger cages with a view to the outside to real access to the outdoors.

I know you get your eggs from Trader joe's ... here

is a old article but has some good info on the differences in eggs.

If you choose one of the local organic standards (Oregon has the best ones and are subscribed to by some organic/sustainable farmer's) then you are getting whatever the agreement is with that local organic standard. which is better than no real standards. However, I can't find that info at the moment. I know I read up on it a long time ago. but, one I picked my farmer's I was pretty much done with researching the topic.

My requirements for the farmers: free range, cage free, not debeaked (which means that they have space), organic feed, run around in fields and have real access to both sun, grass/grass seeds, and bugs and a "normal" chicken life. I haven't asked what is in the feed - but I will next time I go to market. I think my farmer's are now use to me asking random odd questions. the oddest one to date is about neutering of lambs -- but that one was Zim's fault. He watched dirty jobs or some such show about people neutering animals with their teeth. eeeeewwwww!

zim said...

wow, 5g/day is an awful lot of fish oil.

at best, i only understand half of what Peter is on about, but he cautions against too much fish oil.


JustJoeP said...

the 5 grams is my acupuncturist's recommendation.

Ame, you've depressed me, tremendously.

On a plus note, I spoke to my father last night who said he and my mother now visit the Farmer's Market in Highland, every Saturday, and get fresh veggies there - yay!! One small step at a time.