The Big Reason Why Americans Refrigerate Eggs While Europeans Do Not
It’s odd discussing about eggs and whether they should be in the refrigerator or not. In the USA, People don’t really give a second thought of such things as it is around the world. Eggs of course like all food need tom be in the fridge, it’s as simple as that or is it?? What you may not know that in the other end of the world, the Europeans don’t do so. Then, why is it that Americans refrigerate eggs when Europeans are dead against it. What gives?? The answer is in the fact why two different cultures practice the opposite in preventing catching a bug. Hers the reason why.
1 The main issue is a deadly bug
The main issue isn’t refrigeration; it is the dreaded salmonella which is the bacteria responsible for the most common causes of food poisoning. Salmonella is evident and most likely present in almost all chicken farms. They can easily be present on the feces that one usually sees outside eggs sticking to the shell. But this can become even more dangerous when it infect the inside of the egg after infecting hen’s ovaries.
2 The method of egg washing was started by the US
It was the US which perfected the method of egg washing way back in the seventies. Once eggs are laid and collected, they go straight into a machine for a shampoo with soap and hot water. The steam and hot water washes away feces and along with it traces of salmonella. But!! There is one big problem with washing eggs in such a manner.
Eggs have a thin coating called a cuticle without which it cannot retain water and oxygen; neither can it protect the egg from harmful bacteria. The eggs are then vulnerable to spoil and infection which is why Amercia refrigerates eggs. The eggs are put into the fridge to keep out harmful bacteria from infecting them.
3 Europeans have a different approach
Now in Europe, safety experts adopted a different approach. The cuticle was left as it is and even went one step further to ban egg producers from washing eggs. Thus in Europe, it was illegal to wash eggs during in dairy farms. This method discouraged refrigeration because when the eggs return to room temperature, the eggs may sweat causing mildew and bacterial contamination.
In Europe, Chickens are vaccinated against Salmonella and the method turned out to be very effective in preventing infection from eggs. In the year 2000, The UK recorded more than 14,000 cases of food poisoning due to eggs. In recent years however, that number has decreased to 8000 after safety measures were adopted against eggs. In the US, 79,000 cases of egg related food poisoning were recorded but the population too is a larger one.
4 To refrigerate or not to refrigerate
Concerning the subject of refrigeration or keeping eggs at room temperature, there are advantages of disadvantages related to both methods. Refrigeration prolongs the shelf life of an egg but they are also exposed to odors and flavors from other foods which can be absorbed by the absence of their cuticles.
Connoisseurs claim that Eggs kept at room temperature taste better although if eggs are refrigerated while in their cartoons and away from smelly foods, it shouldn’t really pose a problem. Chefs recommend keeping eggs at room temperature when being used for baking as it is convenient for the mixing.
Although America refrigerates eggs, you can start keeping your eggs at room temperature too. But! Before you do so, always purchase eggs from a farmers market and ask them if they have washed their eggs or not. If they haven’t then it’s most likely the eggs will have the cuticles intact. One needs to be consistent in storing eggs if unwashed eggs are put in the refrigerator, they should never be removed until ready for consumption.