I just realized that this is my third egg post in just a few weeks. Oops! I hope y’all like eggs as much as I do.
Anyhow, after a recent trip to the grocery store where I spent way too long scanning all the labels trying to decide which type of eggs I should buy, I decided it was time to do a little research to figure out what all the different labels mean. I figured many of you might want to know which eggs are best as well so I’m going to share my findings. Just in time for all the eggs we’ll be eating for Passover and Easter.
What do the labels really mean?
“free range” of grassy areas, perform their natural behaviors, and do not live primarily on grains or live in crowded warehouses
not necessary organic, although some farmers do use organic feed despite not having the “certified organic” label (ask your farmer about this)
some research has suggested that eggs coming from pastured hens may also be more nutritious than conventionally-produced eggs
uncaged inside barns, and are required to have outdoor access, but the amount, duration, and quality of outdoor access is undefined
I think it depends on availably of the different types of eggs in your area and what you can afford. Given my research, pastured eggs are definitely my top choice. These hens are given the freedom to live happy, natural lives while eating grass, bugs and meal worms instead of a diet consisting only of grain. The issue is that pastured eggs are local, seasonal, and in limited supply so sometimes they’re hard to procure. They’re also more expensive.
At one point we had the luxury of buying our eggs from a family that raised pastured chickens at Isaac’s school. That’s no longer an option because they don’t raise chickens anymore but we still have a couple ways of procuring eggs from healthy, happy chickens: buying eggs directly from a local farmer at the farmers market. Again, this depends on the season and supply. My next choice would be free-range eggs (organic, when possible) and my last choice would be cage-free. I avoided conventional eggs, even prior to my research and I will continue to do so.
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