If you are at the store and go to the egg section there are so many options it can be very overwhelming. There are organic eggs, pastured eggs, and more that you can choose from. Is there really any difference in these eggs and if so what is it?
To start, what does organic even mean? Organic means that the chicken was raised uncaged, without any drugs or chemicals in their feed. With that being said the organic label that is put on the egg carton is controlled only by the USDA. Unlike most chickens, the chickens that have organic eggs are not spending the majority of their lives in cages. That means these chickens are spending time outside their cage, but do not really have a chance to live outside like they would on a farm that practices sustainable agriculture. Organic chickens must have “access” to the outside but that does not mean anything more than the availability of an outdoor area. This access can be as small as a 4ft x 4 ft concrete patio for 10,000 birds, but still passes because the chicken has ‘access’.
Organic eggs can be costly compared to the normal eggs you can find at the store. Producing organic eggs is more costly for the farmer, so the eggs are more costly as well. From there, costs go up as you get closer to the quality of a truly pastured egg. Organic eggs are considered healthier for you to eat than conventional eggs. That is because the chickens are fed organic food, and are not given any antibiotics unless the chicken is sick. Organic eggs must meet all USDA requirements, which will allow them to get the organic label. Although the organic eggs may sound good because it says organic on the carton, they are not the same as pastured eggs where the chickens are allowed to forage and access a more diverse diet like they would in a natural setting.
Pastured eggs are eggs that come from chickens that live outside their whole adult lives. These chickens produce the best eggs for you to eat because they are the healthiest and most natural. This is also the best and healthiest solution for the land the chickens are living on. Pasture raised eggs are by far the healthiest and most nutritious option for anyone consuming eggs. This is because the chickens are actually living how they are supposed to be instead of spending their whole lives inside subsisting on a limited diet.
Pastured chickens get a lot of their food from the ground that they are living on, which is key to their health. These chickens can eat what they want, when they want and this is the best for their lifestyle. Pastured Eggs are by far the best choice for anyone who is buying eggs and you will surely be satisfied with the exceptional flavor. Pastured eggs are going to bring you the best quality and healthiest option, while you are also helping local farmers afford to practice more sustainable and environmentally beneficial practices.
Know what type of eggs you are buying and the reason behind why you are buying them. There is a lot more to think about then just buying the first carton of eggs that you see with a fancy label. We would recommend buying your eggs at a local market whenever possible. If you’re near the Caldwell area, you can come and visit Little Cow Mountain for any of your local farmers market needs or contact us with any questions you may have about our farm.