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I thought this was what unpasteurized meant


I want my eggs washed because I deal with enough shit, literal and metaphorical, in my every day life, that I dont want to start my day off with it during breakfast.

CurlyMoustache, avatar

You don’t have to eat the shit, you know


I cant help it, reminds me so much of your mothers cooking.

CurlyMoustache, avatar

My mother died of cancer while I watched. I was 13.

It was a relief, because her cooking was shit

sxan, avatar

I don’t really know if there are laws about not selling eggs like this. Are there? I understood the practice of washing and sterilizing eggs came about as a marketting thing, b/c Americans tend to buy based on superficial appearance, and washed eggs sold better.

Is egg-washing mandated?


About 60 percent of the eggs sold in the United States come from processors who participate in USDA’s grading service, voluntarily paying to have their eggs graded so the eggs can display a “USDA Grade A” or “AA” shield on their cartons. The grade is based on qualities that can be observed in the shell, yolk, and egg white when the egg is inspected with lights and other specialized equipment. Specifics on egg-grading criteria can be found here.

Egg processors who participate are required to spray-wash their eggs with warm water and use a sanitizing rinse and air-drying techniques specified by USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS).


FYI multiple studies have found that there is no safety benefit to washing. It just looks nicer, and people think it’s safer.

sxan, avatar

Thanks, that confirms my understanding, although I’m surprised the participation rate is as low as it is. That’s really interesting, thanks!


Yeah, as an American I’m surprised it’s only 60 percent. Pretty much anything I’ve ever seen available to me has been washed/graded/refrigerated. Maybe farmer’s markets? But no way do they have 40 percent market share. I’ve occasionally had friends with coops so I’m not unfamiliar with having shelf stable eggs, though.

At this point I think the thing that’d freak out Americans the most is the whole thing about not needing to refrigerate. It’s ingrained now.

sxan, (edited ) avatar

One of the funniest food things I’ve seen was an interview with a French chef, who was talking about cheeses. I wish I could remembeg it well enough to quote him, but he was basically saying, in Europe, you don’t refrigerate cheese. Cheese has cultures, it is a living thing. Conversely, in America, cheese is dead, and we put it in the morgue, in little body bags.

Edit I found it! It was Clotaire Rapaille, and he’s a market researcher, not a chef. The quote came from a 2003 Frontline episode on advertising and marketing:

For example, if I know that in America the cheese is dead, which means is pasteurized, which means legally dead and scientifically dead, and we don’t want any cheese that is alive, then I have to put that up front. I have to say this cheese is safe, is pasteurized, is wrapped up in plastic. I know that plastic is a body bag. You can put it in the fridge. I know the fridge is the morgue; that’s where you put the dead bodies. And so once you know that, this is the way you market cheese in America.

I started working with a French company in America, and they were trying to sell French cheese to the Americans. And they didn’t understand, because in France the cheese is alive, which means that you can buy it young, mature or old, and that’s why you have to read the age of the cheese when you go to buy the cheese. So you smell, you touch, you poke. If you need cheese for today, you want to buy a mature cheese. If you want cheese for next week, you buy a young cheese. And when you buy young cheese for next week, you go home, [but] you never put the cheese in the refrigerator, because you don’t put your cat in the refrigerator. It’s the same; it’s alive. We are very afraid of getting sick with cheese. By the way, more French people die eating cheese than Americans die. But the priority is different; the logic of emotion is different. The French like the taste before safety. Americans want safety before the taste.


The biggest reason eggs are refrigerated in the US is because they’re not vaccinated for salmonella, so refrigeration is needed to inhibit growth. The US was able to do that since they have the infrastructure for end to end refrigeration. It’s not necessarily wrong, it’s just another way to do it. Since salmonella can also be on the outside of the egg they need to be washed, and since they’re refrigerated the loss of the protective layer doesn’t matter. I guess in Europe with the vaccination it also lowers the chance of salmonella on the outside of the egg allowing the outside to remain unwashed and protective of the inside making refrigeration unnecessary. There’s just not enough of a reason to change things in the us now since the refrigeration method is already in place and switching would cost more up front. The main downside is that you can’t eat raw eggs in the US which means some dishes can’t be made, but the vast majority of the US isn’t interested in raw egg dishes anyways.


People in the US eat raw eggs all the time. Salmonella outbreaks from eggs are almost unheard of.

Also, washed or unwashed, eggs will keep longer in the fridge. And it makes for a less cluttered pantry. There’s really zero reason for Europeans to be smug about this.


There’s really zero reason for Europeans to be smug about this.

So I can see that you don’t really understand the European mindset


Which is?




By that reasoning, washed or unwashed everything keeps longer in the freezer. And it makes for a less cluttered pantry AND fridge.

TheLowestStone, avatar

Except for the part where freezing food effects flavor and texture.


Yeah Ive lived in Europe and the US and raised chickens and have done it both ways. It’s kinda nice having eggs that aren’t covered in bird shit though.

TCB13, avatar

There’s just not enough of a reason to change things in the us now since the refrigeration method is already in place and switching would cost more up front.

Cutting on electricity and washing costs?


The main downside is that you can’t eat raw eggs in the US

You can buy pasteurized eggs, though they can be hard to find. You can also DIY them with a sous vide cooker.


DIY as in like cook them?


You can sous vide eggs to pasteurize them and they are still raw. That’s what they do when they make cookie dough to eat raw.


Sous vide is just accurately holding a water bath at a given temperature. You put your food in (in a baggie if necessary) at a specific temperature and time to achieve a consistent “doneness”.

130-140 farenheit for an hour is enough to kill pathogens in eggs, but low enough it doesn’t cook them.

ProxyZeus, avatar

Very common in more rural areas, I do this with my chickens’ eggs too


Or local coops. I get them like this (though with more shit) from friends’ backyard chickens

aarRJaay, avatar

They probably think they grow out of the ground rather than come from an animal.


wait, they don’t come from egg plants?


Yeah, there are no farms or individuals with chicken coops in the US, how could we possibly know where eggs come from?

/s (In case it wasn’t obvious)



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  • 0ops,

    Ew it came from the CLOACA


    There are tons of back yard chickens in the USA, even in many cities.


    I always wondered if selling eggs to your neighbors violates some us laws

    at_an_angle, avatar

    Why sell? Just give them free eggs!


    Why get a paycheck? Just work for free!


    Chickens lay a shit ton of eggs, up to one a day each if they’re mature and well fed. Even with a small flock it’s easy to run out of room in the fridge. You have to get rid of them somehow - so why not give what you can’t use to the neighbors? It’s not at all uncommon, I’ve been on both sides of this “transaction” hundreds of times.

    captain_aggravated, avatar

    As a vegetable gardener that is occasionally snowed under with tomatoes or peppers, I’d love a neighbor with chickens who would occasionally trade a couple dozen eggs for a couple hundred cayenne peppers or something.

    MattTheProgrammer, avatar

    Then there’s me… I’ll be the guy who gorges himself to death on a couple hundred cayenne peppers he got for free

    BeardedBlaze, avatar

    I don’t know anyone with chickens that stores the eggs in the fridge.

    Edit: spelling


    Now you do, nice to meet ya lol. Of course when I ran out of room in the fridge I’d leave some on the countertop. The fridge is just a more convenient place for me, plus if anything they’ll keep longer in there, which is more important when you have a queue of 6 dozen eggs because your hens won’t chill out


    Likely not. There’s some weird agricultural laws because of the great depression. You can mail raw vegetables through the USPS as long as they are addressed and have correct postage, for example.

    captain_aggravated, avatar

    If you sharpie an address on a coconut and put a stamp on it, the USPS will deliver it. They’d rather you didn’t make a habit of it but they’ll do it.


    Yeah it’s a surprisingly big trend here. And the people I know with chickens are suburban families. They are not on farms and they do not have a ton of other pets. Just a dog or cat.


    We just moved out of the burbs and have ducks ordered for spring, mostly as pets, but also to eat their children.


    Hmm, this has me curious, I am in Australia at the moment, and the eggs here are unwashed and are kept outside of the fridge. However, they look as if they have been washed. Is there a special kind of rinse eggs go through here that doesn’t remove the protective layer? Or are they doing something insane to the poor chooks to get eggs this clean? I rarely see any feathers, bits of muck, etc.


    Googling around it seems that they are heat treated for salmonella before delivery but it is still technically recommended to keep them in the fridge longer term in Australia. Just doesn’t matter if you use them in a week or so.


    Just out of curiosity, taking into account feed and care for the chickens, how much would you say each egg costs?

    HessiaNerd, (edited )

    we raise keep chickens. did the calculation a couple years ago (eggs/week / feed/week) and it was essentially break even, but I think the eggs are better (store bought eggs have super pale yolks). We feed them a mix of feed and kitchen scraps (trimmings of produce etc). Now its a good price from what I read in the news, but if you include labor, its probably not worth it or you would pay yourself next to nothing.


    Oh yeah, I consider myself unpaid labor so that’s ok. XD Do you mean that you also sell the chickens? Or just that you raise them from chicks?


    sorry, misspoke. we keep chickens for eggs.


    But you get chickems! They are their own reward.


    And plus you’ve got fair-trade ethically-sourced cruelty-free local eggs. Those aren’t cheap.


    I grew up raising chickens among other animals. Poop and feathers on eggs was the norm. This ‘50s processed white bread, white sugar, clean eggs, etc. that was the sign of “progress” I guess IMO has done more harm than good in some ways.


    And a pack of 10, not 12.


    what’s wrong with a pack of 12?


    They use metric egg cartons, we use freedom cartons.


    7/13th of an ounce of eggs pls


    It’s comfortable for Americans but unheard of in many European countries. The point of this post is to make them uncomfortable.


    I live in Europe and I’ve seen packs of 4, 6 (most common), 8, 10, 12. It’s not unheard of at all.


    Well, I never bought eggs outside the Czech Republic, Germany and Romania, and they were only available in multiples of 10.


    In Norway I’ve only seen eggs sold in packs of 6, 12, 18, or 24. As far as I can remember, anyway.


    wow 24 is huge!

    sukhmel, (edited )

    Where I used to live there were 6, 10, 15, and huge packs of 25 30. Recently 9 eggs packs started appearing (I could almost bet the price is the same as 10)

    Edit: I somehow decided that 5 times 6 is 25


    15? Are those arranged 3x5? Is the 25 package square? I’ve only seen packages arranged as 2xN.


    15 is 3×5, as for 25 I stand corrected, those are 30 arranged 5×6 (I counted several times and then wrote an incorrect number 😕)


    who needs that many eggs lol, and why wouldn’t they simply buy 3 packs of 10


    In Spain it is also a dozen (12).

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