A few weeks ago, we wrote what turned out to be a very interesting article about The Difference Between ‘Brown Eggs’ And ‘White Eggs’. But while we were digging for information regarding our beloved eggs, one more question came up: why US supermarkets refrigerate their eggs while in most other countries, eggs are placed on the shelves?
To be honest, this is not an “only-US” thing. Along with Americans, Australians, Japanese and Scandinavians tend to chill their eggs while the rest of the world doesn’t. But as far as i know, people from other countries don’t get salmonella all the time and their eggs are also safe to eat. So why do we need to refrigerate our eggs?
Well, it all has to do with the preparation of the egg before they go to the market. (the article continues after the ad)
Simply said, the countries that need to refrigerate their eggs are those who washed them first while the countries that sell them off the shelf, did not. When we wash an egg to remove dirt and chicken feces, we remove the cuticle, the thin layer that’s on the outside of the shell that keeps out bacterial invaders. Since the egg’s natural protection is removed, producers need to refrigerate their eggs to avoid contamination.
So what’s the best solution? Wash the eggs and run the risk of bacteria “invasion” or leave them unwashed and leave the potentially risky chicken feces on the shell? No one can tell for sure, the truth is though that both the US and the Europe have around 100,000 salmonella instances per year so i guess there’s no decisive answer on that one.