If you really stop and think, they’re pretty hard to avoid. Eggs, they’re EVERYWHERE from breads to pizza dough and even some ice creams. During my vegan adventure they were the hardest thing to avoid! First off, who doesn’t like some sort of eggs for breakfast? You can have them poached, scrambled, over easy, omelet style, fried….. well, you get the picture. I think it’s safe to say they might just be America’s go to breakfast staple.
Though they may not be served up directly on your plate they’re in just about all of the other breakfast foods that lots of people enjoy like pancakes, muffins and even toast! It makes me think eggs are sort of the overlooked protein.
Some of you are probably asking “Why is the meat geek talking so much about eggs?” Well, I and a few other Ag bloggers have teamed up with the American Egg Board as ambassadors for the Good Egg Project. This project is an initiative started by US egg farmers to raise awareness about how eggs are produced, the nutritional benefits of eggs and fight hunger. Over the course of the next 6 months be on the lookout for a few more egg related posts.
Here are a few egg facts I’ll bet you didn’t know;
Did you know that there was protein in eggs? In fact, eggs are one of the highest quality “all natural” proteins around, providing all nine essential amino acids. In fact, a whole egg has about 6.3 grams of protein.
Got high cholesterol? No problem, eggs have you covered there too! It’s no secret that eggs have had a bad rap for being high in cholesterol however, according to the USDA Agricultural Research Service, eggs are down from 215 to 185 mg of cholesterol and have greatly increased in vitamin D levels. With only 70 calories per serving, eggs serve as one of the cheapest protein sources out there at only about $0.15 each!
So no matter how you like them, eggs can be incorporated into almost any diet these days.
Along with the fact that eggs are tasty and nutritious, egg farmers have made leaps and bounds in the sustainability arena. Researchers from the Egg Industry Center recently released results from a new life-cycle analysis (LCA) study of U.S. egg production systems that showed the egg supply chain has significantly decreased its environmental impact in the past 50 years. In fact, from 1960 to 2010 the egg industry has decreased their carbon footprint by 71% while increasing total egg production by 30%.
I think sustainability and animal welfare go hand in hand, really what good is one without the other? Today hens are able to produce 27% more eggs per day and are living significantly longer with the mortality rate dropping by 57%. This is not only more efficient for the farmers raising these chickens but tells us that the hens are living much healthier lives while providing the eggs that we love. Due to advancements in technologies, breeding and nutrition, hens today weigh 30% less than in 1960 and require half as much feed and 32% less water to produce a dozen eggs.
I think it’s safe to say that sustainability isn’t only on consumers’ minds but at the forefront of America’s egg farmers’ minds as well.
I encourage each of you to check out the American Egg Board’s “Good Egg Project” and take the free pledge to join America’s egg farmers in the fight against childhood hunger. For each pledge made the AEB will donate one egg to local food banks to help alleviate childhood hunger.