Egg Labeling: The Good, The Bad And The Inhumane
The incredible, edible egg is a popular breakfast staple for its tasty flavor and fairly inexpensive pricing. Everyone seems to be shopping healthier and smarter these days, but these sometimes confusing labels on egg cartons can make it hard to figure out which eggs are best.
You may have seen a carton that is labeled, "free range," "free-roaming" and "cage-free."However, these terms are very loosely defined by the USDA when it comes to egg production and are actually often used as a marketing ploys to make consumers think they are getting special eggs. These terms do not mean that chickens are living the high life, free to run and play in green pastures. Rather, chickens have access to the outdoors - meaning, there might be a window in the corner of the large barn where some 200 chickens are caged.
Consumers may want to consider being careful when buying these eggs because chickens that produce eggs at mass produced farms are often treated inhumanely and consume questionable products such as low quality feed, hormones and antibiotics.
So you may be thinking that eggs labeled "organic" are the best. However, Time Magazine says wrong again in their article titled, "Organic Eggs: More expensive, but no healthier," and states that the USDA has actually done little research on organic eggs and the use of antibiotics in the chickens that produce these so called organic eggs.
If you are looking for the healthiest egg, many experts agree that pasteurized eggs contain the highest amount of nutrients. However, in order to get the best quality eggs, consider buying locally and finding out what practices your local farmer follows. Improve your breakfast, and your health will thank you!