Buying eggs locally is a good way of selecting a food source you can trust. There have been many food scares in the past about salmonella, dioxin or other cancer-causing chemicals in chickens. Anyone concerned with their health will wonder if the chickens are given antibiotics or other products which will end up in the food chain. You may ask around for local farms selling fresh eggs, look them up in the classifieds or make contact at markets.
5 Advantages to Buying Local Eggs:
You may meet the farmer personally and see the chickens. The chickens should run about freely and not be cooped up in small dirty cages. This exercise, fresh air and varied diet will produce better tasting eggs.
- The taste and color of a free range egg is superior to that of a caged bird. Try it. Nutritionally, these eggs contain more Omega 3, Vitamin E and A.
- The eggs are days or weeks old.
- Buying locally means less transport and smaller impact on the environment to get the product to you.
- By helping local farms to stay in operation, you guarantee the preservation of green space in the community.
Green Eggs Defined
If you cannot see the farm personally, here is some help with deciphering egg packaging.
Organic – Eggs from uncaged chickens that have outdoor access. The chickens are fed an all-vegetarian organic diet, free from pesticides and antibiotics.
Pastured – The chickens were raised on pasture with access to sun, grass and bugs. This is hard to check as no inspection is required.
Free Range – There are no universal standards and no inspection is carried out, but generally the chickens are in barns or warehouses with outdoor access. They are allowed to nest and forage, but the quality of the land and density of the living conditions are not specified.