Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Can White Eggs be Organic? Are Brown and White Eggs made equal?

Absolutely, pasture raised, cage free and no different from the brown eggs. I was talking to my neighbor a farmer of course who was joking that it was hard for her to sell white eggs in her farm store because customers question if they are organic, pasture raised and what not.

Our Flock!

So here's my little exploration to the cause. While most of us who are used to buying organic eggs always see brown eggs in the carton and our mind is programmed to think that brown = good, white = meh! The color of the eggs is dependent on the breed and the genes of the chicken. If you really want to know, you have to check the ear lobes and the feather color of the chicken. If they are white they lay white eggs and if they have red ear lobes and darker colored feathers they are usually brown egg layers. But this is not an exact science. There are some breeds of chickens that also lay blue or pale green eggs.

With that established, the majority of eggs sold in this country are factory farmed, which means chickens are kept in pens where they can't move other than eat and lay eggs. I won't go into the cruelty of what else is done to these chickens. White egg layers used to need lesser feed than the brown egg layers so the majority of the factory farmed chickens are you guessed it white feathered and lay white eggs.

This is in no way means that some of the brown egg layers are not subjected to the same treatment as those white egg layers. So do your research. There are several different articles to read if you want to wade through the different labels on egg cartons these days (cage free, organic, free range, pasture raised etc.,).

The friendliest one!

If you ask me what kind of eggs I want? I want eggs from 100% pasture raised in a good clean environment for the chickens. I want to use the word clean carefully here, not in the human clean and sterile environment sense of the word. Chickens like to get dirty, dig and scratch in areas that humans might consider unclean.

Pasture raised chickens wake up in the morning, jump out of their coop and roam around the whole day and then get back in the coop for the night. Do you want to know what the perfect source for this might be? Your local small farmer where you can visit and see how the chickens are raised. Or do it yourself and have a small backyard flock. Short of that you have to believe the claims the egg producers make on their cartons and websites.

As for the nutrition content of the white and brown eggs. They are typically about the same apparently. Read this article here for a lot more information. Also the taste profile of fresh farm eggs and factory raised eggs are hard to tell apparently. To me personally the eggs from these pasture raised chicken eggs or more specifically my pasture raised chicken eggs are very easy to tell. Bright vibrant and nary an eggy smell. Even one of my friend's sons can tell the difference, he said these eggs were soft and fluffy. Either he is a foodie or the difference is not that hard to detect. You have to find out for yourself.


The very same farmer from the first paragraph also said that the average supermarket egg is at least 2-3 months old. I thought buying organic eggs solved all my problems! It is quite possibly very true because I am guessing the egg farmer has a certain day that he deposits all his eggs to whomever is buying it, he is not doing it every day right? Then whoever buys these eggs, packages it and then it gets sent to a warehouse and then shipped to your local grocery store. Then of course I went looking and found this article which is also a pretty good read.

Read this Washington Post article. I do not agree with Ms. Haspel's taste experimeent of course but the rest of the article does provide good information about the confusion that exists.

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