Types of Eggs

Types of Eggs

Types of Eggs

While the majority of eggs consumed today are chicken eggs, a variety of eggs from different species of bird are commercially available in different parts of the world, from the petite quail egg to the very large ostrich egg.  Eggs from commercial chickens differ from those from wild breeds in that they have lower cholesterol and lipid contents. This difference could be the result of many years of genetic selection of breeds with increased feed-to-egg conversion ratios and faster rates of lay.

The commercial hen used in today’s egg production has been selected for optimal feed conversion and egg production along with overall health, disease resistance, livability, and temperament. The majority of egg production is carried out using a battery cage system, which offers a high degree of control over environment, feed, water, hygiene, biosecurity, and egg collection. This system also facilitates mechanization. Other production systems include barn and free-range, which offer more freedom to the birds but often lead to higher disease and mortality rates and potentially to increased susceptibility to bacterial contamination of the eggs.

Shifting dietary patterns in the population have resulted in compensatory changes in the egg industry. A major change has been the increased use of eggs in for the pre-prepared packagedfood industry. In the USA over 30% of the total egg production is used to make , and egg-product usage has been the most rapidly growing part of the industry, accounting for the majority of the increased per capita egg consumption over the past decade. Another area of growth has been the speciality egg market. As consumers become more health conscious, there has been an emphasis on functional components of foods that contribute to health and well-being. Eggs with enhanced nutrient benefits, especially with increased content of omega-3 fatty acids, are available worldwide.

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