Why Organic Eggs from the Store are a Scam

by Sarah Healthy LivingComments: 212

organic eggs

Eggs are nature’s perfect food.

Food manufacturers have attempted to demonize eggs for decades as it is infinitely more profitable to convince the public to eat Egg Beaters and processed vegetable oils rather than to encourage them to consume the humble nutrient perfection that is the egg.

Even folks who see through the marketing hype against eggs that is cleverly disguised as “science” frequently get waylaid by the free range and organic eggs labeling on egg cartons.

The truth is that buying organic or free range eggs from the supermarket or healthfood store is no guarantee that the hens providing those eggs lived a healthy life or that the eggs they provide are nutrient dense.

Organic Eggs Reality Check #1:  Did you know that there are no requirements for the quality or amount of time spent outside for organic eggs or even free range eggs?  This means that organic eggs could actually be from hens who get basically no bugs in their diet from pecking in the ground.   If the hens don’t get to peck around in the ground for grubs and insects, the eggs they produce will have drastically reduced nutritional value – organic or not.

Organic eggs Reality Check #2: Did you know that the hens from a free range or organic eggs farm can still have their beaks cut and be subjected to forced molting which involves starving them for 7-14 days which can in some cases kill them?

Organic Eggs Reality Check #3:  Organic eggs marked as “cage free” does not mean that the hens have access to the outdoors or even daylight!   The hens could actually be running around inside with artificial lighting on a concrete floor and the eggs still qualify as cage free!

The only way to get truly healthy eggs where you can be sure the hens are not abused is to buy local from a farmer you trust, not organic eggs from the store!

There is no way around this folks that I have found.  You must start connecting with the people in your community if you really want to source some decent eggs!

Folks in my buying club regularly tell me how shocked they are when they run out of the eggs sourced locally and buy a carton of organic eggs from the store how puny, pathetic and bland tasting they are.  They are also incredibly expensive.

Not only will you more than likely save yourself some money buying eggs locally, you will also be helping a local business remain viable and improving the nutrient density of your diet all at the same time!

Organic eggs most definitely does not always mean better!

Below is a fantastic infographic on the reality behind the egg industry created by Kristin Lindquist at visualism.org.   What factoids did you find most alarming?

More Information

The Best Egg Substitute (plus Video How-to)

Organic Store Eggs Just Don’t Stack Up

What Oxidizes the Cholesterol in Eggs?

Think You Have Fresh Eggs? Here’s How to Tell

Duck Eggs: More Nutritious and Less Allergenic

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

Picture Credit



Comments (212)

  • Erin

    I tell people this all the time and they just don’t believe there’s a big difference. They always say “but my eggs are organic!” and just can’t seem to comprehend that there could still be deficiencies even in a product the U.S. government has labeled “organic.” That 95% figure was shocking. I’ve come to take my farm-fresh eggs for granted and I guess I just assumed that more people than that were on board. Thanks for the great graphic – it’s a lot harder to ignore the information when it’s presented in visual form.

    August 14th, 2014 5:39 pm Reply
  • Theresa Dijkstra Leclerc via Facebook

    For some reason I can eat eggs local, but don’t do well with the eggs in the store. It will be very hard to go back to buying eggs from the store.

    August 9th, 2014 7:50 am Reply
    • Tracy

      Same here!

      August 13th, 2014 5:46 pm Reply
    • barb

      I have the same problem. Organic or not store bought eggs all brands make my stomach/intestines very ill it is painful. I found local eggs that are eating bugs and seeds outside and wow I have been eaten them almost daily and not problems at all. I will have to stop eating eggs when frost hits because I believe what ever is in the feed organic or not is a problem. My thought is it contains GMO’s or chemicals that should not be in feed even organic. Even organic feed uses a chemical in place of vitamin K.

      September 10th, 2015 10:12 am Reply
  • Crystal Strawn via Facebook

    We raise our own in chicken tractors and we feed them non gmo project verified chicken feed.

    August 8th, 2014 10:58 pm Reply
  • Emily Bertram via Facebook

    What color are free range egg yolks? We get some local but the yolks are pale

    August 8th, 2014 5:22 pm Reply
    • Tracy

      That has more to do with the variety of chicken than anything. I get extra egs from both my in-laws and my sister-in-law. My in-laws have brown and red chickens that roam free all over. Their eggs are brown and have very yellow yolks. My sister-in-law has white chickens and they stay in a pen. Those eggs are white and have more pale yolks.

      August 13th, 2014 5:52 pm Reply
    • Mike keckler

      There is magnolia in some feeds,thats where the vibrant color of the egg comes from

      August 20th, 2014 11:12 am Reply
  • Rebecca Powell via Facebook

    This is disappointing news. I’ve asked at several local farmers markets if the chickens are fed with non-GMO corn, and each time I’ve been told, no. So I haven’t purchased and ended up buying organic eggs from trader joe’s since they promise, no GMO.

    August 8th, 2014 4:05 pm Reply
  • Jessalyn Watson via Facebook

    For me, even the best store bought organic eggs don’t have the same richness as our home raised eggs :-/ I had to break down n buy a dozen too and I just don’t like them :-/

    August 8th, 2014 4:03 pm Reply
  • anon

    “running around” is not an appropriate term for “cage free” hens at all, because normally the large, artificially lit, concrete floored buildings, are jam packed with chickens that are barely able to move. “inching around” would be more like it :) Many towns are getting backyard chicken ordinances, so it would sure be worth it to look into trying to keep your own hens for eggs and buying organic chicken feed and feeding them lots of fresh stuff :)

    August 8th, 2014 1:15 pm Reply
  • Maureen Daly Lawther via Facebook

    Thank you for this. I’ve been buying Vital Farms eggs from Whole Foods until I can source from a local farmer. Do you know anything about VF? Super expensive but I have to trust them…

    August 8th, 2014 10:46 am Reply
    • Ingrid

      Vital Farms eggs are great on all counts, except their non-GMO feed has soy in it.

      December 29th, 2014 9:27 pm Reply
      • Ingrid

        Also, you can order non-soy feed eggs from Grassfed Traditions, but they’re going to cost you.

        December 29th, 2014 9:30 pm Reply
  • Stacey Maaser via Facebook

    The same thing just happened to us and we were very disappointed as we’ll.

    August 8th, 2014 10:33 am Reply
  • Joan Wood via Facebook

    Farm and garden section of craigslist! Neighbors are always trying to get rid of excess eggs. Oftentimes they are cheaper too.

    August 8th, 2014 10:28 am Reply
  • Emily Gustafson via Facebook

    Ha she must not live in the burbs… A neighbors backyard hens?! I wish there was a farm closer than 1 hour away.

    August 8th, 2014 10:19 am Reply
  • Joanna Guenther via Facebook

    We have a neighbor who feeds their chickens chicken feed from the feed store. I’d rather buy organic eggs from the store…wouldn’t they be better?

    August 8th, 2014 10:13 am Reply
  • Arleene Keel Martin via Facebook

    I was just complaining Saturday about how awful the store bought eggs were that I cooked for breakfast. Our girls aren’t laying either. I was highly disappointed. There was no way to make those eggs “taste right” in my kids’ eyes.

    August 8th, 2014 9:52 am Reply
  • Jennifer Starin via Facebook

    I think it’s unfair to call store-bought organic eggs a “scam.” People need to read, and understand labels, and what terms like “natural, cage-free, free-range, etc” mean. They’re still “organic” and meet the organic guidelines. Not all store-bought organic eggs are out to dupe the consumer. And I thank God they are available to me when I don’t have access to a local farm supply.

    August 8th, 2014 9:41 am Reply
  • Fiona Josef via Facebook

    I live in the middle of LA. No local farms here and I don’t have a yard to raise my own chickens, neither do my neighbors. Best I can get is pastured eggs from whole foods at $7.99 a dozen! So should o not bother any more?

    August 8th, 2014 9:37 am Reply
    • Nancy

      Try farmfreshtoyou food delivery service! It works in LA and you can get local eggs delivered to you :) they are delicious!

      If you want to try it out for ten dollars off, use my ref code NANC8672. Hope that helps! :)

      November 23rd, 2015 7:25 pm Reply
  • Kateri Scott via Facebook

    I hate how every carton of eggs in our stores says “grain fed” or “vegetarian fed” which both mean GMO corn and soy fed. Chickens are omnivores and foragers for goodness’ sake!

    August 8th, 2014 9:33 am Reply
  • Lysia Jones via Facebook

    i have paStured hens, BUT MY FEED IS not organic. ideas?

    August 8th, 2014 9:23 am Reply
  • Christine Ten Eyck Myers via Facebook

    My chickens have pretty much stopped laying. 14 laying hens doing nothing and I have to buy eggs.

    August 8th, 2014 9:11 am Reply
  • Michele G Hogan via Facebook

    I sometimes get organic eggs from the local store, but mostly get them from a co-worker who has chickens in her backyard. Her eggs are “puny” LOL, but the flavor! What is interesting is the yolks are so much more orange in color than the organic “factory” egg. (Still a factory egg even though they call it free range. Ha)

    August 8th, 2014 8:56 am Reply
  • Laila LisaMarie Prescott via Facebook

    There’s a HUGE difference! We started getting ours from a local farmer & when he’s run low b/c they’re not laying, I’ve had to get organic store eggs again. It was like eating rubber & the yolks were drastically lighter!

    August 8th, 2014 8:47 am Reply
  • Erinn Evans via Facebook

    All of the farm fresh eggs from both local farmers markets and from friends that raise chickens in my area are fed round-up ready corn. These eggs give my daughter a rash from head to toe. Until I find another organic source, I’m stuck with egglands best organic from the store.

    August 8th, 2014 8:30 am Reply
  • Sheila Streicher via Facebook

    See if there’s a local WAPF organization in your city. The members may be able to point you to farmers who sell eggs directly to consumers.

    August 8th, 2014 7:34 am Reply
  • Kristy Glazier Tompkins via Facebook

    ugh. I prefer to stay away from GMO feed and the latest scare of arsenic in chicken feed. the organic store-bought eggs are the same price as organic local eggs (if they were to be found easily here)!

    August 8th, 2014 7:30 am Reply
  • Jennifer Orozco via Facebook

    What if you have no choice to buy from a store? Lately all these posts on how why we should do this and that. We all don’t live in farm country and do what we can by purchasing organic, range free eggs from the store because we have to.

    August 8th, 2014 6:19 am Reply
  • Nicola Howell via Facebook

    The only satisfaction I get from buying organic eggs in the US is that the corn they consume is GMO free corn… Store brought eggs are also heavily washed .. Farm eggs are sold for pet consumption only because they haven’t been washed In a solution that’d kill salmonella… Their feed still needs to be GMO free! European eggs are not washed.. But hens from store eggs in the UK are vaccinated for salmonella.. Unwashed eggs do not need to be refrigerated (making them great for baking!)

    August 8th, 2014 6:16 am Reply
  • Evelyn Heinemeier via Facebook

    Some of your readers (myself included) aren’t allowed to have chickens, by law. Why not suggest local Amish suppliers? That’s where I get my eggs.

    August 8th, 2014 5:28 am Reply
  • Jennifer Perez via Facebook

    I buy vital farms or handsome brook farm eggs at Wholefoods. I’m happy to see they’re level 5 eggs :)) With the amount of money they cost- it’s a relief to see that they’re quality.

    August 8th, 2014 3:52 am Reply
  • Cindy Landskron via Facebook

    Sarah, you have chickens???

    August 8th, 2014 3:39 am Reply
  • Jacqueline Shockey via Facebook

    I dont think im close to a farm here in cali…

    August 8th, 2014 3:08 am Reply
  • Brianne De Leon via Facebook

    Not everyone has access to a local farm. Ours only sells eggs a few months out of the year. If you had a choice between organic or non organic I’m going with organic. And the organic eggs from the store are cheaper than the farm ones.

    August 8th, 2014 2:51 am Reply
  • Erin Joy Drost via Facebook

    I mean this in a nice way I promise…. don’t waste your money on organic

    August 8th, 2014 2:32 am Reply
  • Kimberlee Mercier via Facebook

    Recently I was able to find a local source for farm eggs, but almost every egg in the 2 dozen I’ve purchased so far had blood spots in the yolk :-/ I’ve done a google search, but can’t seem to find consistent answers from reputable sources. Any info as to why this would happen? I’ve noticed it in organic store eggs too, but very rarely.

    August 8th, 2014 2:30 am Reply
    • Sutton Farms

      blood spots are present in eggs usually is an inherited trait, this does not harm the eggs or the value, or nutritional value of the egg. It is quite disturbing to see but will not harm you. Usually the hens that produce these are culled. But sometimes especially if bought locally fresh hard sometimes to find out which hen is responsible. Because they are running loose and not in a cage, can’t tell who did it. LOL

      October 20th, 2014 8:48 am Reply
  • Lisa Collard Saucier via Facebook

    Wow…once you try to follow the healthy, organic plan you bust the bubble once again. What do you do if your only option is supermarket organic free range eggs?

    August 8th, 2014 2:18 am Reply
  • Sierra Witkowski via Facebook

    I could not live without the pastured eggs we buy from a family friend. Our daughter eats one a day. Can’t wait to have our own chickens.

    August 8th, 2014 2:09 am Reply
  • Sheree Rainbolt Kren via Facebook

    All organic eggs are not created equal. Some are better than others, but the organic eggs I buy at whole foods are awesome.

    August 8th, 2014 2:03 am Reply
  • Anita Messenger via Facebook

    Our hens would slow down laying in the heat of the summer, too…until we started raising black soldier fly larvae and feeding them to the chickens. For the first time, the hens did not fall off in their laying.

    August 8th, 2014 1:59 am Reply
  • Rana Rana via Facebook

    Ok this is disheartening! I thought I was doing good just buying organic dairy- I’m in omaha and haven’t the faintest clue how to fid a farm I can buy produce from as I’m not from here and don’t know the area

    August 8th, 2014 1:57 am Reply
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  • Emily

    http://www.certifiedhumane.org/index.php?mact=News,cntnt01,detail,0&cntnt01articleid=38&cntnt01returnid=15 Look up the certified humane label, it can help to find better treated laying hens. For instance, they must have access to outside, not just be out of cages. They must have a basic amount of space, roosts, the ability to get outside (larger doors so that one can’t just block the way.) Beak trimming is allowed, debeaking is not (there’s reasons for beak trimming.) You cannot starve the chickens to induce molting. It’s about the best you can do in stores (which unfortunately is the only place I can get my eggs, since raising our own is outlawed here and driving out of town to try and get eggs is gas-expensive.)

    Also, the more ‘certified humane’ eggs are sold in stores, the more those stores will want certified humane, and the more farmers will start to convert… and the more your local farmer will be likely to be able to sell their eggs to the big store and make their eggs available to more people. It’s the way to help your farmers and also help FAR more chickens. I’ve been a fan of theirs for about the last 10 years, and I’ve loved seeing how they’re more available now (even in Costco now! That means that restaurants can go to the better eggs!)

    October 9th, 2013 1:37 pm Reply
    • Greg Clark

      We rely on a local farmer and actually go to the farm as part of our errands to pick up organic flour, beef, poultry, eggs and maple syrup.

      I know the fields where the grain is from, I have seen the poultry and almost ran over the chickens in the driveway.

      I think that’s the only way to have confidence in the food we buy.

      June 2nd, 2014 8:38 pm Reply
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  • Tiffany

    Hi Sarah, great post! I have always been eating local organic free range eggs because I don’t seem to find eggs from pasture raised chickens. The farm claims that their chickens live in a cage free environment (inside and outside the barn), range free on organic pasture and are fed certified organic feed that’s all vegetarian soy, wheat, buckwheat, corn and other necessary fruits & vegetables (no animal by products and GMO free). However, I know that eggs from pasture raised chickens that aren’t fed grains especially soy are better but I can’t find them where I live in Vancouver, BC Canada. So my question is, am I better off not eating any eggs at all or are these eggs good to eat?

    May 5th, 2013 10:13 pm Reply
  • Randy F

    Great article Sarah! We will start enjoying our own backyard chickens in just a few weeks and reading your article just gets me more excited than ever – Looking forward to your future posts :-)

    – Randy

    May 1st, 2013 9:02 am Reply

    The only way to really be sure is to raise your own. Second best is to get the product from someone you trust so completely that you trust that person with your life. Just as with a very few herds of grass-fed pastured beef or other meat, there are “closed flocks” where no outside birds are brought into the flock, which means no buying of day-old chicks from suppliers who for sure feed GMO’s & other objectionable substances to the parent birds. See can your egg farmer answer that question. Then you will realize that your search probably isn’t over yet.

    April 21st, 2013 5:02 am Reply
  • Shravya

    Thanks for the info Sarah! I buy eggs and raw milk from a local farmer and they do taste much better than store bought eggs. After reading this article i wanted to verify so i asked my farmer if her eggs are fed GMO grains (she says they are free range and live outside, eat bugs n all) and she repled with “The Natural free range eggs
    ($3.75/doz) get grain that might have GMO in the mix”!! i was horrified and am not going to get my eggs there anymore :(. I hate that i was feeding these egg yolks to my baby thinking that I`m giving her the healthiest stuff available :( . oh well i know now to always always get all the info first.

    April 18th, 2013 8:19 am Reply
  • BGenie

    Sarah, Thanks for the info, (and the interesting debates above 😉
    I’ve been looking into organic eggs and poultry for my own diet. I haven’t been able to find any local egg producers. The closest one is an hour away and I am not willing to drive 2 hours just for a dozen eggs.
    I have the land to raise my own, but we have coyotes and bears. We have to lock our cats up at night and the ignorant city-moved-to-country-because-they-could-afford-it neighbors complain about loosing pets to the “wild dogs” and they have woke up to find rabbit hutches torn open with ‘missing’ rabbits… so If I want to keep chickens, I’d have to cage them securely, which kind-of negates the purpose of raising my own, because they won’t be cage-free.
    What solution would you recommend?

    April 9th, 2013 1:45 am Reply

    Given that most soy and corn in the United States of America is now genetically engineered, aka Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), I look for but haven’t yet found, in local stores and farmers markets, eggs from hens fed feeds free from soy & corn, although a few farms advertise soy-free feeds. 100% organically fed & pastured hens are a minimum requirement for optimum health, of course. A book, Beyond Broccoli, by a former vegan, Susan Schenck, is helpful in its explanation of the value of egg yolks, especially raw. The egg whites contain avidin, which , when raw, destroys biotin, an essential B vitamin. As a former farm-worker, I witnessed many occurrences of farmers’ deception and lying by omission. You’ll need more than luck in your search. Like many other foods, over frequent consumption of eggs has sometimes resulted in an egg allergy, as cited by Susan in her book on page 143 where Dr. Ben Kim advises eating three to five servings (two eggs per serving) per week. However, see also Kern, Jr, “Normal plasma cholesterol in an 88-year-old man who eats 25 eggs a day. Mechanisms of adaption,” N Engl J Med, 28 May 1991, 324 (13):896-99. Susan cited that example in her book on the same page 143, so allergy is apparently dependent on the individual human and on the eggs themselves.

    March 19th, 2013 3:34 pm Reply
  • Kaitlyn

    Sarah, When buying pastured eggs from a local farm, how should we wash them before use? Also, site your source please so I can look into this further. Thanks so much!

    February 25th, 2013 12:36 pm Reply
  • Mary

    I eat eggs from pastured hens almost every day. There is no more convenient, nutritious food in my book, but I just read an older blog post on Marksdailyapple.com, in which Sisson warns that eating eggs every day puts you at risk for developing an egg allergy. Does that make sense? Has anyone had this experience?

    February 1st, 2013 3:41 pm Reply
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    February 1st, 2013 12:11 am Reply
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  • Mandy Flory via Facebook

    Kelly I would go local also. The reason why is that a local farmer selling eggs is likely feeding those eggs to his family and friends so he feels pretty good about the quality!! He is putting his name on the line. Commercial organic you are always taking a risk, some farmers care and some don’t. Some farmers raise organic cause providing a quality product from a healthy animals matters to us and some do it cause organic farmers make more money… especially in commercial where the farmer has no additional costs for organic feed cause that is paid by the owner of the birds (broker).

    October 11th, 2012 6:14 pm Reply
  • thehealthyhomeeconomist via Facebook

    Can you go to the farm and check out the local eggs? I would almost always trust a place where I can show up and check it out over eggs from the store where who knows where they come from.

    October 11th, 2012 5:49 pm Reply
  • Kelly Jim Spezzano via Facebook

    Which would you recommend if your choices were:
    Local Farm Eggs (def. not organic and not sure if they are cage free ) or Store Bought Organic/Cage Free? (these are my only two options)

    October 11th, 2012 5:19 pm Reply
  • Fiona Yousef via Facebook

    I live in LA. I buy pastured eggs from Whole Foods. Where can I get locally pastured eggs from a farm around here?

    October 10th, 2012 11:42 pm Reply
  • Dawn Lavendier Encarnacao via Facebook

    Glad to report that my 14 pastured hens (and a few handsome roosters, too) are snug on the perches in their cozy coop tonight, after another long day of foraging, dust-bathing, and socializing on 2 acres of grass and woods. I can’t even imagine having them confined to cages that have fewer square inches than a sheet of paper. :(

    October 10th, 2012 8:24 pm Reply
  • Jennifer Zint via Facebook


    October 10th, 2012 7:51 pm Reply
  • Jennifer Zint via Facebook

    I get a dozen X Lg eggs from the farm I get my milk from -$5.50 a dozen so not as often as I would like –but no soy and are cage free and eat good bugs -so worth it at times (yummy too) but will get organic from the store at $3.54 a dozen since we eat 3-4 dozen a week1

    October 10th, 2012 7:51 pm Reply
  • Mandy Flory via Facebook

    There is nothing to expose, the organic law states that they only need to have access on days that the weather is fit.
    Been there raised them and honest to God, my husband was so ticked that none of the chickens would go outside we had to push them out! and then they run right back in the building. It is like culture shock for them to be out and they know that food and water is inside. It is also a big joke among the poultry farmers that added these chicken doors that the birds will not go out.

    Organic birds are fed organic grains (corn for sure not sure about soy beans my husband is the farmer I just pretend like I know what is going on LOL).
    And I am not sure if the same holds out for chickens as cows but dairy that is organic is NOT necessarily fed 100% organic feed :0/ They only need to feed a percentage of organic (presumably more than conventional but many farmers lie about this).
    The laws/rules are ALL MESSED UP. Buy local as often as possible.
    Also I do not understand exactly why but my husband told me to NEVER buy an organic chicken for meat (commercial) because whatever they are treated with goes thru their meat and conventional antibiotics go to their gut which we don’t eat anyhow….

    October 10th, 2012 7:45 pm Reply
  • Lyndsey Stang via Facebook

    Have there been any farms exposed as beeing free range and organic but were really giving the hens maybe 5 min a day of light?

    October 10th, 2012 7:09 pm Reply
  • Sam Belina via Facebook

    Oh man Dana! When we were in Hawaii there were chickens running crazy everywhere. Wonder if you could have a few where you live.

    October 10th, 2012 7:00 pm Reply
  • Sam Belina via Facebook

    Oh man Dana! When we were in Hawaii there were chickens running crazy everywhere. Wonder if you could have a few where you live.

    October 10th, 2012 7:00 pm Reply
  • Kris Weimer via Facebook

    Chickens should not be fed grains – organic or not. IMO

    October 10th, 2012 6:57 pm Reply
  • Sandi Garcia via Facebook

    You are missing a very fundamental definition: Organic. This means the chickens have been given organic feed (not Monsanto GMO enginered feed). Obviously, pasture eggs from a farmer you trust is the best but the term organic in the supermarket means something different than cage free/free range/pasture raised.

    October 10th, 2012 6:55 pm Reply
  • Sandi Garcia via Facebook

    You are missing a very fundamental definition: Organic. This means the chickens have been given organic feed (not Monsanto GMO enginered feed). Obviously, pasture eggs from a farmer you trust is the best but the term organic in the supermarket means something different than cage free/free range/pasture raised.

    October 10th, 2012 6:55 pm Reply
  • Ivy Clinger via Facebook

    That is why we have our own backyard chickens.

    October 10th, 2012 6:28 pm Reply
  • Dana Woodbridge via Facebook

    Sorry but there are very limited resources here in Hawaii. Local eggs are $8 a dozen. And there is no source for raw milk here. I do what I can. I have tasted farm fresh eggs and they are superior, just not something I can get right now.

    October 10th, 2012 6:26 pm Reply
  • Blanche Natashka via Facebook

    this is why I buy direct from 3 farms, whichever farm I happen to be closest to when I need to get a dozen or two.

    October 10th, 2012 6:25 pm Reply
  • Amanda Colo via Facebook

    Laura Penney Laurie my sentiments exactly! good, better, best! Of course local pastured organic eggs are the best option but when not possible, grocery organic free range eggs are better then conventional.

    October 10th, 2012 6:20 pm Reply
  • Kris Weimer via Facebook

    My understanding is that even the organic cage free chickens get soy and corn feed

    October 10th, 2012 6:14 pm Reply
  • Cory Trusty via Facebook

    I miss my chickens.

    October 10th, 2012 6:11 pm Reply
  • Laura Penney Laurie via Facebook

    I buy farm fresh organic eggs from someone local. BUT………I would still tell anyone if they are buying eggs from the grocery that they are still better off getting organic cage free then conventional. Would you not agree? Conventional hens are for sure stuffed in disgusting quarters and fed GMO corn and soy feed……No?

    October 10th, 2012 6:07 pm Reply
  • Charlie Zelhof via Facebook

    organic store eggs >>> vegan subsitutes tho

    October 10th, 2012 6:07 pm Reply
  • Andie Burton via Facebook

    Wow. Thank you for sharing!!

    October 10th, 2012 6:05 pm Reply
  • Tina Waters via Facebook

    I have an egg lady down the road from me!! NO comparison to the quality of those eggs!!!!

    October 10th, 2012 6:05 pm Reply
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  • Julie

    Hi All-I may have missed this in the above comments, but I found organic eggs at a local store, that say: “USDA ORGANIC, certified organic feed, “Certified Humane Raised and Handled”. Do you guys think that those are good eggs? Thanks for your thoughts.

    September 21st, 2012 1:31 pm Reply
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  • Anastasia @ eco-babyz

    As much as I would love to, we can’t afford eggs from a local farmer. Not only would they cost at least $4/dozen, but I would have to add the cost of gas (at least half hour each way) which is now nearly $4 a gallon! We buy organic for nonGMO reasons, not really for them being ‘humane’, I know they aren’t.

    September 17th, 2012 10:27 am Reply
  • Juan Matherne

    Thanks for this interesting but equally important information. I honestly have no idea about how eggs are produced and marketed in the farms. But its quite alarming to find out about the life of hens when they are just caged to produce eggs. If there is really no significant difference in the quality of eggs produced between hens that are caged and those that are not, then I don’t see a need for them to be prohibited from doing their activities.

    September 17th, 2012 2:00 am Reply
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  • Denise Dalessio via Facebook

    lies are reigning at the food shop!

    September 15th, 2012 7:57 pm Reply
  • vivian

    Oliver, get off it. We heard you the first 150 times.

    September 15th, 2012 5:34 pm Reply
  • jason and lisa

    oliver, what about eating the egg raw?? would it make a difference then?? 80% of the eggs we eat are eaten raw..

    -jason and lisa-

    September 15th, 2012 5:11 pm Reply
    • Oliver

      Jason and Lisa – I used to eat eggs raw – the ones I got from my local bodega or whatever. I would mix it in with orange juice to hide the feel of raw eggs sliding down the hatch. That was way back when. Today, I’m kind of paranoid about many if not all of the farming practises. I suppose if i Knew the source, the farmer and what he does, or if i raised my own i would be more confident.
      Eggs are one element shy of perfection – they lack Vitamin C. So i used to take raw eggs and vitamin C and be good to go. I can get the other properties of raw eggs from other food sources that aren’t as risky – plants for instance don’t have many of the inherent risks that living farm animals have.
      If you’ve got good egg sources then that’s awesome. So too with fresh raw milk – but it has to be very fresh as in “fresh squeezed” :)

      September 15th, 2012 6:05 pm Reply
      • Jaime

        Yay! Oliver agrees that fresh, good quality eggs and fresh, good quality milk is good for you!

        I’m glad he also knows the exact nutrients required for good health and in what exact proportions! Considering science is always moving the guidelines here, thank goodness we have Oliver!

        September 15th, 2012 8:39 pm Reply
  • Ginger Jilek via Facebook

    Thank you for this post! It’s sad, disgusting and manipulating from the big companies but that’s why local farms are SO much better!

    September 15th, 2012 4:15 pm Reply
  • Eileen Anglin

    Are you aware of the Certified Humane eggs? I’m surprised it wasn’t mentioned. When I buy eggs, I purchase only those eggs that have the Certified Human seal. My local supermarket has it, thank god. I only buy the eggs that have it. http://www.certifiedhumane.org/

    September 15th, 2012 3:55 pm Reply
  • Rachel B.

    I feel very fortunate to have a local friend who raises ducks and that’s where I get my eggs. I visited her today after reading this article and, sadly, somebody stole her prime layers out of her yard. She has one adult layer and got some babies recently and while she’s waiting for them to lay, she feeds them organic but it still has corn in it. The price for the organic, corn-free is $7 more so she has to wait til the other ducks start laying so she can sell the eggs and afford to get back to the organic, non-gmo feed. I’ll still buy the eggs from her because I’m supporting my friend and because they’re better than the store-bought. We all do what we can.

    September 15th, 2012 3:42 pm Reply
  • Tina Zanetti via Facebook

    best to try and obtain your eggs at a farm. Not only do you get fresh eggs you are also supporting your local farmer!!!

    September 15th, 2012 2:51 pm Reply
  • Beth

    When looking at farms, an ideal thing to look for is chickens that follow cows. In other words, chickens that are allowed to follow in areas where cows have recently been have a rich source of bugs from the cow pies. The hens spread it out, replenish the land, and have higher nutrient content in their eggs and meat, such a vitamin K2 which comes from the bugs and worms they consume.

    September 15th, 2012 2:24 pm Reply
    • Sara r

      Oh this makes sense! The best eggs in town (I’ve tried them all!) Come from the farm that delivers my raw milk! Seriously they are awesome, very dark orange yolk. your comment helps to explain why they are the best. fortuny th perey dozen are also the cheapest at 3.50$ per dozen.

      September 15th, 2012 3:24 pm Reply
      • Sara r

        SORRY for the typos

        September 15th, 2012 3:26 pm Reply
  • Rene Whitehurst via Facebook

    For those that feel they can’t get good eggs because of where they live, this is what we did: we contacted the most local Weston A Price chapter and a bunch of us formed a group that would take turns driving 90 miles one way for milk and eggs, honey and walnuts. We had enough people that we only had to drive once every 2-3 months. It worked out wonderfully! We did this for about 3 years until milk and eggs became available within blocks from our house. We purchase upwards of 4 dozen eggs at a time since they last so long.

    September 15th, 2012 1:24 pm Reply
  • Kimberly

    The color of the yolk and size of the egg is influenced not only by the conditions in which the chicken was raised, but by breed as well. Some chickens naturally lay a smaller and/or pale-yolked egg. We buy ours from a local dairy (also where we pick up our raw milk) where we can see the chickens running around and foraging every day. They have several varieties of chicken and for the large eggs ($4.25/doz), there is a mix of brown, white, and blue eggs. They also sell “mini” eggs for $2.00/doz from a smaller laying variety of chicken. Very cute, but I tend not to buy them because I just don’t have much of a use for them.

    September 15th, 2012 1:09 pm Reply
  • Jessica Talstein via Facebook

    Unfortunately the eggs I buy are not on the cornucopia list. They must not be big enough to make it on there? I only find their eggs at Sunflower/Sprouts. Whole Foods doesn’t carry them nor does any other grocery around here.

    September 15th, 2012 12:56 pm Reply
  • Violet Lin via Facebook

    This prompted me to do research into the organic eggs I buy from my co-op (New Century from Shullsburg, WI) and I was very happy with what I read about their methods. They have a facebook page.

    September 15th, 2012 12:53 pm Reply
  • Faith C Borbee via Facebook

    i get my eggs the day they are hatched, from a Amish farm :) thank God!

    September 15th, 2012 12:51 pm Reply
  • Jessica Talstein via Facebook

    If I could buy fresh eggs instead of store bought, I would. (I’d rather raise my own!) I figure the organic eggs are better than the thin shelled, pasty yellow yoked, soy and corn fed, kept in battery cages eggs that sell for cheap in any grocery. Some of us have to compromise. :)

    September 15th, 2012 12:48 pm Reply
  • Elisabeth Tull via Facebook

    I wish it were so easy to say that eggs come from chickens, period. It isn’t. It’s not just a simple matter that you are what you eat. You are also what you eat has eaten. Chickens that eat what they are designed to eat and to live in an environment they were designed to live in are healthier, and they produce healthier eggs. Diseased animals produce less healthy food. While not all animals that live in factory farms are diseased, they do all live in an environment that favors disease.

    September 15th, 2012 12:48 pm Reply
  • Rebecca Williams Nichols via Facebook

    Thank you, Crystal and Anna!! I actually really didn’t like this post. The tone was over the top on the “guilt out your fellow crunchy moms on how much better they should be doing”-o-meter. Organic is better than GMO, period. Organic eggs aren’t a scam; people just shouldn’t assume organic means more than it does. Maybe the title should have been “What’s better than organic eggs?”

    September 15th, 2012 12:42 pm Reply
  • Leah

    This is interesting, but my experience is different. I do get organic eggs from the grocery store more often than not, but I have also gotten eggs from Organic pastures and tropical traditions, among other sources, that are truly pastured/soy free, etc. I am always surprised at how small the pastured eggs are, and the egg yolks are often more pale than the ones I get at the store. I expect them to be better than store bought, but I have never noticed anything better about them that I can taste or see.

    September 15th, 2012 12:12 pm Reply
  • Polly Mitchell Giles via Facebook

    Rebecca, you are SO fortunate to have the raw milk for $2!!! Where I am, it’s $8 a gallon!!! Eggs $5.50.
    I wish it was more cost effective…

    September 15th, 2012 12:08 pm Reply
    • yissell

      Yet, you are even MORE fortunate. Where I am, it’s $16 a gallon of raw milk. Eggs can be anything from $7 to $9!!
      San Francisco Bay Area, CA.

      September 15th, 2012 4:14 pm Reply
  • Ann

    Like some of your other commenters, could you please make recommendations for those of us who do NOT have access to farms and farmers? Us city dwellers don’t have the ability to “take a drive to the country” for produce, and if it is not available at the local Whole Foods or Easy Way produce store, we are forced to rely on our local supermarket giant. From what I am hearing from you, I should just quit eating eggs entirely if I have to buy cage-free, range-free, organic supermarket eggs. No more eggs for me til I buy my own farm?????

    September 15th, 2012 12:05 pm Reply
    • Ron

      Check your Whole Foods for Vital Farms eggs. All the WFs around here (Austin) carry them, but I’m not sure about nationwide. Also, search and watch their videos on YouTube…very informative. And their website is a wealth of good info about how they treat their girls.

      September 15th, 2012 5:07 pm Reply
  • Terry Hafner via Facebook

    Thanks, Jan! Eggs come from CHICKENS! Period!

    September 15th, 2012 12:02 pm Reply
  • Mark Felton via Facebook

    I get my eggs from a neighbor who raises them on pasture. Haven’t bought eggs from the store in a couple years

    September 15th, 2012 12:01 pm Reply
  • Michele Fairman via Facebook

    I have a problem trusting people who pull up to a farmer’s market and pull food out of cooler and tell you what it is and isn’t – no one is watching them to make sure they’re telling the truth

    September 15th, 2012 11:56 am Reply
    • Jennifer

      I understand your apprehension. Though having grown up with a dad who hauled us (all five kids) to sell our fruit at the farmers markets in the Los Angeles area I would tell you strike up a conversation with the farmer or employee of te farmer and get the facts from them. Ask them about there farm, how they grow there fruit, raise their hens etc and if you get a bad vibe walk away and go onto the next farmer. There are some crooks out there at the markets just like in any occupation but I think honestly most people come by it with the right intentions.

      In the end If the consumer asks for it the farmers will raise it. We just have to be willing to pay for it. Biggest thing I see is many of speak the right things but won’t pay with our pocket books. Like someone said earlier it costs almost $47 dollars a bag in our local feed store for a bag of soy free, organic feed. Ouch! Especially when all the birds think they should have some too.

      September 15th, 2012 10:06 pm Reply
  • Christa

    My Dad had chickens for a hobby/to get great eggs for many years. So I know the difference of what those type of eggs look like. He let them run all over the place, they ate whatever the beaks could catch. And whatever leftovers we gave them. The egg yolks would be a deep dark orange, unlike any egg yolk I have bought from the store. He would sell the eggs for next to nothing at his work, church, etc. I even heard of a time where one of the friends he sold his eggs to had a child who was allergic to every egg but my dad’s. It is a sad thing these poor chickens do not get to live the life chickens are meant to live. They are smart animals and great for the environment if treated the proper way. I like to buy cage free high omega eggs, but they are still unlike those eggs my dad had. If I did not live in the middle of the city, I would love to raise a few chickens. They would keep the bugs at bay and my lawn would get natural fertilization. 😉

    September 15th, 2012 11:55 am Reply
    • Liz

      There is no such thing as a wild chicken. Feral chickens are not wild. The genetic makeup of a chicken would not exist if it were not for humans. The phrase “how chickens are meant to live” is inaccurate. They’re not meant to live.

      September 15th, 2012 12:18 pm Reply
      • Kimberly

        What do you mean, “They aren’t meant to live”? She wasn’t talking about wild chickens, at all and never used the word “feral” once. She was simply saying that chickens deserve to be raised in a way that is natural to them… running around in the sunshine and digging for bugs. Not only is it good for the chickens, but if you plan on eating them or their eggs, it’s good for us, too. Chickens raised in a pastured environment produce eggs with higher amounts of omega 3s than their store-bought counterparts, and the meat from them is tastier and more vitamin-rich, too.

        September 15th, 2012 1:02 pm Reply
        • Liz

          Describe what’s “natural” about an organism thats scientific name is gallus domesticus. There is literally nothing natural about these atrocities created by farmers and scientists because birds shouldn’t be domesticated! These are the equivalent of GMOs

          September 15th, 2012 3:04 pm Reply
          • Ursula

            You’re talking nonsense. So what some idiot evolutionist gave them a stupid name like that. They also claim that wales came from hippos (or was it cows? I think they keep changing their minds).

            I believe God created some animals that are MEANT to be domestic animals, for people’s use. There have always been chickens, people have been eating eggs forever. It is NORMAL and NATURAL.

            September 15th, 2012 10:50 pm
          • Silkie

            You’re confusing selective breeding and genetic modification. There are no GM chickens. You think we should go back to hunting and gathering, fine, that’s your opinion. Have fun stealing robin eggs. If you’re going to attempt to include facts in your comments, though, try to get them right.

            September 16th, 2012 12:03 am
      • Oliver

        Talk about your GMO’s…

        September 15th, 2012 1:09 pm Reply
        • Roxanne

          I see the trolls are out again…

          September 16th, 2012 3:38 pm Reply
  • Samantha Gerrits via Facebook

    I love raising my own organic eggs. There is nothing better!

    September 15th, 2012 11:53 am Reply
  • Sandy Lethin via Facebook

    We get ours through a local CSA. You can tell how good they are by their bright orange yolks!!

    September 15th, 2012 11:47 am Reply
  • Tonya Scarborough via Facebook

    For what it’s worth, Frenz’s are the only eggs I have ever bought anywhere – store, farmer’s market, or local farm – that consistently have dark orange yolks. But they’re expensive, all the way from New Zealand. And to be honest, I don’t know for certain how they are kept I would like to have my own chickens someday, but can’t yet.

    September 15th, 2012 11:47 am Reply
  • Kiki Bacaro

    I am having a very difficult time getting eggs that I believe are pastured, based on the color and toughness of the shell. The one’s I get from my csa are definitely NOT the color and toughness of shell that I would expect from truly pastured hens. Any connections in Miami that you or anyone else know of?

    September 15th, 2012 11:47 am Reply
  • Sasha Garcia Degn via Facebook

    I feel for Scarlet. I used to live in Los Angeles and the way I used to buy and eat food was much different. It can be extremely difficult and even though there are many farmer’s markets, they can be crowded and inconvenient in a large, (sub)urban area.

    September 15th, 2012 11:41 am Reply
  • Erica

    Hi Sarah,

    What if your only source of eggs is the organic eggs from the store, is it best to avoid these eggs altogether?

    September 15th, 2012 11:40 am Reply
  • GreenBootLiving via Facebook

    sharing this one :) so true!

    September 15th, 2012 11:40 am Reply
  • Zulay Valle via Facebook

    Those are not organic..now that I have my own chickens I can tell the difference.

    September 15th, 2012 11:34 am Reply
  • Jennifer

    awesome article! except the part about pastured eggs from farmers being cheaper. I won’t sell my eggs because people want to pay me $3/dozen and that doesn’t even cover the cost of the organic grain I feed them. Raising chickens is expensive! If I did a more intensive – raise them, keep them penned so the eagles could not eat them and I could find all the eggs they lay, bought new chicks every year and butchered last year’s girls… It would still cost me more than $3/dozen… But I would be more profitable than what I do now (let them free range and get old)

    September 15th, 2012 11:33 am Reply
  • Gail Stewart via Facebook

    Great article….I’m going to get my eggs at the local farmer now!!

    September 15th, 2012 11:32 am Reply
  • Mariruth

    Reality check #4. Not everyone can afford to buy pastured bug eating organic eggs. It’s just a fact of life. We can only do the best we can within our fixed (retirement) income. I certainly would if I could. Thanks for bringing the facts out to those who can.

    September 15th, 2012 11:32 am Reply
    • sandybt

      The cheapest eggs at the store may seem more affordable in the short term, but in terms of the nutritional value for your dollar, they’re more expensive, as you’d have to eat more of them to get the same amount of nutrients (aside from the nutrients that may be missing completely). Plus low nutrient food also tends to lead to higher health care costs in the long run.

      September 15th, 2012 1:54 pm Reply
      • Mary

        oh what nutrients? The fat content is the same. The protein content is the same. Hell, even the calories are the same. There is slightly more cholesterol in the normal egg.s there is a little more vitamin a in eggs from pastured chickens. Its not even missing entirely. Americans get plenty of vitamin a.

        September 15th, 2012 3:20 pm Reply
        • Silkie

          I’m interested in reading the study you cite. Can you please provide your souce? Thanks!

          September 16th, 2012 12:27 am Reply
          • Jezna

            I’m not sure what she’s quoting. I tried to do some digging and I came up with the link below. Everything else is from MotherEarthNews, which has their own agenda. I prefer peer-reviewed articles because it allows other scientists to demand proper controls and sets a higher standard of research.

            This is from Ken Anderson from Penn state. It does reference the MotherEarthNews research and expands on it. It has all the proper controls- the birds were the same breed and the pasture content was monitored closely. Both the caged and the pastured were fed the same feed. The hens were the same and only differed in pastured versus conventionally caged.


            The only difference he found was that the fat content was higher in the ranged hens. This includes omega-3

            September 16th, 2012 10:30 am
  • Margi Willowmoon via Facebook

    I buy organic eggs for the same reason that Crystal mentioned. They are not fed GMO grains.

    September 15th, 2012 11:30 am Reply
    • liz

      yes. it is very important that the chickens, with no known wild origin (scientist theorize that they might have been a mix of three species of gallus; however a few of their genes are unique to their species, which is gallus domesticus-so they don’t know where they came from), who have been bred through centuries by humans to be mindless, flightless, delicious animals only fit for cheap and ready consumption or eggs that are cheap and ready to eat only be fed organic, nonGMO grains that have also been bred for so many generations that they no longer genetically resemble wild grains. Very important. Makes perfect sense.

      September 15th, 2012 3:56 pm Reply
      • Ursula

        ‘Scientists’ make a LOT of assumptions, including the one that the hypothesis (yes, not even a theory) of evolution is true. Because that assumption is what your comment is based on. But what if God actually CREATED certain animals for people’s use? What if they were created to be domestic animals, for people to get wool, milk, butter, eggs, meat etc. from?
        I expect that chickens were created from the beginning to be living with people, just like cows and sheep. And from the beginning people have been eating chicken eggs.

        September 15th, 2012 10:44 pm Reply
        • Cruella

          That’s completely untrue. God didn’t create chickens-humans did. I’m not even claiming natural selection. I’m saying that farmers in the olden days took birds that tasted okay and domesticated them. They then selectively bred the biggest birds and the tastiest birds with each other. Farmers still do that today with cows and pigs. The chicken wasn’t a gift. Maybe the original ancestor (which is really a combination of three species). The same is true of corn, dogs, peanuts, bananas. Humans have been artificially selecting the qualities that we want.

          September 15th, 2012 11:03 pm Reply
  • Anna Clark via Facebook

    I don’t know about the suggestion that I get off my duff. I think I’m a pretty busy woman trying very hard to keep it all together for my family and the pressure to make one more stop, one more connection and one more responsibility to my plate is just not happening right now. Although I know all this information, I just do not always have all the time, patience, energy and money to do everything perfectly for my family.

    September 15th, 2012 11:28 am Reply
    • Mary

      Nor should you! You want to know what is a million times worse for your health than eating eggs that aren’t deemed healthy by Princess Sara? STRESS. Stress is terrible for you. It raises your adrenaline, messes up your sleep, changes your eating pattern. Cortisol, another hormone, is also not good for you. People need to stop worrying about eating the perfect foods. People have studied the eggs from pastured chicken and you know what the nutritional difference was? There is more vitamin A in the eggs from pastured chickens. 5% more. Not even a lot. That’s it. You know what would help you significantly more than making that additional stop, talking to an additional person and paying additional money ??? Ten minutes of peace and quiet. Meditate. Relax. Breathe. Its a million times better for your health than stressing about a 5% increase in vitamin a

      September 15th, 2012 3:15 pm Reply
      • Jaime

        Hey! “Princess Sarah” is just doing a service- providing information which many of us appreciate! I’m sure she wasn’t looking at you specifically when she said “get off your duff..”. All any of us can do is our best, and I don’t see any reason to resent someone encouraging us to strive for better!

        September 15th, 2012 8:25 pm Reply
      • Silkie

        I agree that it’s hard work – and time consuming – to get good food. We all do the best we can and we all have to make compromises.
        But I’d like to see the source of the study that shows only a 5% increase of vitamin A in pastured eggs? The studies I’ve read have had much more noticable nutritional differences, including vitamin D.


        September 16th, 2012 12:25 am Reply
    • Portabella

      I agree.

      I think it’s common sense to rank the possibilities like this:

      Best: Locally sourced
      Good: Organic
      Acceptable: Any

      Consider that many people are not even eating eggs at all, so do what you can. Strive to be better but don’t get blindsided by perfectionism.

      September 16th, 2012 8:37 am Reply
    • Lacie

      Maybe you should prioritize if you’re too busy to search out the best food for your family, instead of taking the time to read blogs and openly admit that you don’t have time or patience to deal with your convictions or judgement. It’s not hard. It just takes patience. And prioritizing. Family comes first, health comes second. Doing everything perfectly is impossible, but the effort is is something one can put forth everyday.

      September 22nd, 2012 9:05 pm Reply
  • Shannon Bryant via Facebook

    depressing. considering I buy mainly for ethical causes as opposed to nutrition it sucks that my extra $$ has just been padding someone’s wallet with no real change

    September 15th, 2012 11:28 am Reply
  • Scarlet L Doherty via Facebook

    I think that it needs to be pointed out that there are a lot of people, myself included, that do NOT live in an area where we can get local eggs. Not an option. Also, I’m an insurance agent here in FL and most homeowners insurance carriers in this state won’t allow their clients to have farm animals, including chickens. I have to do the best I can do for my family, given the circumstances. So all of you calling grocery eggs “gross”…well…at least I’m trying. At least we aren’t eating fast food, etc. Big Food is huge and extremely hard to separate from entirely.

    September 15th, 2012 11:26 am Reply
    • Alison

      Scarlet, there are buying clubs that deliver raw milk and pastured eggs to FL. Sarah lives in FL and manages…check with your local WAPF chapter leader, I bet you’d be surprised what you can get your hands on….

      September 16th, 2012 8:20 am Reply
  • Rebecca Hauptman Cashman via Facebook

    I am so lucky my neighbor gives me fresh eggs every week. I even had a green-shelled egg once from him!! And I am lucky I have a dairy not too far from me with JERSEY cows, where I can have raw milk for $2/gallon and they are grassfed, only fed antibiotics if they are sick, which is rarely. I am grateful for these blessings every day!

    September 15th, 2012 11:23 am Reply
  • Tricia Mills Baehr via Facebook

    Mine are cert. organic and cert. animal welfare – I get them straight from the farmer Jem Farm. They do sell them at the local co-op too though. Can’t stress enough how important it is to know your farmer and their farm. Ask questions. Unfortunately, lots of pastured eggs are also fed conventional (read GMO) grain – if you’re picky and don’t want that you have to spend some time researching and getting to know the farms and the farmers to make the best decisions for you and your household.

    September 15th, 2012 11:22 am Reply
  • D

    I buy organic because i thought otherwise you get the ones fed GMO corn??!!

    September 15th, 2012 11:21 am Reply
    • Rachel B.

      Anything organic can still be started from GMO seeds. There are no laws that the organic farmers can’t use GMO seeds.

      September 15th, 2012 3:34 pm Reply
      • Rachel Greenfield

        Untrue. The law specifically prohibits GMO seeds from being labeled as Organic, and anything grown from those seeds as well. It’s the Natural label you’re thinking of that can contain GMO.

        October 10th, 2012 7:31 pm Reply
    • liz

      yes. it is very important that the chickens, with no known wild origin (scientist theorize that they might have been a mix of three species of gallus; however a few of their genes are unique to their species, which is gallus domesticus-so they don’t know where they came from), who have been bred through centuries by humans to be mindless, flightless, delicious animals only fit for cheap and ready consumption or eggs that are cheap and ready to eat only be fed organic, nonGMO corn that have also been bred for so many generations that they no longer genetically or physically resemble wild grains. Very important. Makes perfect sense. If you want nonGMO anything, eat wild turkey.

      September 15th, 2012 3:58 pm Reply
  • Dede Obasun Nesbitt via Facebook

    Rancho Alegre Farm.

    September 15th, 2012 11:17 am Reply
  • thehealthyhomeeconomist via Facebook

    Get to know the folks who produce your food. You will make a friend as a special bonus :)

    September 15th, 2012 11:14 am Reply
  • Meliza Reza via Facebook

    http://www.cornucopia.org/organic-egg-scorecard/ Egg score card form Cornucopia Institute

    September 15th, 2012 11:14 am Reply
  • Leigh Kelly Austin via Facebook

    A friend gave me some of her chickens eggs last Friday. Does anyone know how long they can be kept?

    September 15th, 2012 11:13 am Reply
    • greg

      We have 3 dozen chickens and get fresh eggs everyday. We do not refrigerate our eggs and keep them in the mudroom cupboard for upto a couple weeks. Eggs have a natural coating that the chicken leaves on it as it’s layed. This protects the egg from bacteria getting intot he porous shell. Commercial eggs are washed so they look nice and need to be refrigerated to keep them from spoiling. I have kept commercial eggs in fridge for 2 months before using them and they were fine to eat.

      September 15th, 2012 9:24 pm Reply
  • Meliza Reza via Facebook

    I get pasture raised eggs. I seldom eat eggs but many baked recipes call for them so I buy vital farms brand eggs at whole foods market.

    September 15th, 2012 11:10 am Reply
  • Dede Obasun Nesbitt via Facebook

    We get our eggs from a local farm – love them.Grocery store eggs are horrid…

    September 15th, 2012 11:08 am Reply
  • Bonnie Waldrum Oja via Facebook

    Thank You….. It seems we can”t trust any store labels it so sad they will lie and cheat to make a buck.

    September 15th, 2012 11:07 am Reply
  • Jeanne Walker McNeal via Facebook

    My eggs come from my parents. 😉

    September 15th, 2012 11:07 am Reply
  • Crystal Palmer Bull via Facebook

    I would like to raise a few thoughts. I homestead and would suggest everyone… but short of that.. most people are choosing the organic label to make sure that they are not feeding their children GMO’s. Even if the store Organic egg is not free range it is (should be) GMO free. I also want to piont out that while I free range my birds AND give an organic feed to supp. Most local farmers that are free ranging.. are supp with gmo feed. So these are choices you have to weight and make. It is very rare to find a local farmer who does not grain AT all.. and if you do…keep them!

    September 15th, 2012 11:06 am Reply
    • jason and lisa

      agree.. the local farmer we have used for years is great and the eggs are pretty good but i still dont like the gmo in the feed.. i understand that the feed will be expensive and drive the egg cost up but i for one am willing to pay a bit more to avoid the gmo..thats why weve switched to vital farms and are doing everything in our power to get some chickens of our own..that way we know for sure what were getting..

      -jason and lisa-

      September 15th, 2012 5:01 pm Reply
    • Cheryl

      The laying chicken breeds that are available to us, even those that were developed centuries ago, have been selected to produce large eggs. If they were only on pasture and forage, they would be skinny and produce little, bitty eggs. I raise a small flock of heritage breed layers on pasture, but they do need some supplemental feed to produce these lovely eggs with strong yolks and hard shells.

      About the price of eggs: regular chicken feed from the local feed store is about $15 for a 50lb bag. Commercial organic (non-gmo) feed is $42 per 50lb bag, that is IF you can find it locally. It is naturally even more expensive if you have it shipped to you.

      So at least one reason farners feed their pastured chickens gmo-containing feeds is simply price and availability.

      September 15th, 2012 6:35 pm Reply
  • Sonya

    WOW. This makes me sick to my stomach and so sad for the chickens. When I was a little girl I had a pet chicken, his name was Big Bird! I thought I was making better choices by purchasing from my natural food store, but obviously not. Thanks for the post. I enjoy your blog and have learned so much. :)

    September 15th, 2012 11:04 am Reply
  • Alison Conner via Facebook

    I wish I could raise my own chickens! Apartment life does not allow that sort of thing unfortunately…

    September 15th, 2012 11:04 am Reply
    • realfoodiecharlie


      September 17th, 2012 12:56 pm Reply
  • Laura Hartman via Facebook

    I raise my own.

    September 15th, 2012 11:02 am Reply
  • Abby Hudgins via Facebook

    I want my own chickens.

    September 15th, 2012 10:59 am Reply
  • Ady

    I am glad you mentioned Vital Farms because those are the eggs I buy, since it is as close as you can get to farm fresh here where I live. I grew up in a different country and every time I visit my family I get amazed with the color of the egg yolks (truly orange like a mandarine). Vital Farms eggs are definitely darker than any other I have found in the US, but doesn’t get anywhere close to the colors I’ve seen in the past from my home country. Now, my question is, will the type of soil and nutrients, insects, etc hens are exposed to, will be the reason why eggs here in the states can’t achieve that deep dark orange color even though hens were pastured raised? Will they have the same nutritional content as the deep orange color since they were raised the same way (pastured), just in a different soil? Thanks.

    September 15th, 2012 10:53 am Reply
    • jason and lisa

      not sure about that one.. i know the dirt can make a difference with produce.. new england to me has some of the best fresh food in the country.. the dirt is different there and everything that comes out of the ground seems to be better for it.. i would love to go back 200 years and taste food before we destroyed it..

      -jason and lisa-

      September 15th, 2012 4:57 pm Reply
      • Jaime

        I get my eggs from the family who owns my local dairy farm (best milk ever!!) and their chickens have free range of the farm! The eggs are the tastiest, with tough shells etc, but their yolks are never orange- just the deepest yellow colour. I know that in addition to the grain supplement the chickens have access too, the farmers mum (78 and still helps with milking!!) feeds the chickens some corn and fresh cows milk every day. The soil is also a rich red colour, and the farmer grows the best polyculture pasture for his ladies, so I don’t know what factor contributes to the dark yellow colour… but they taste great!

        September 15th, 2012 8:17 pm Reply
        • Silkie

          The dark yellow is from the breed of chicken (some breeds tend to have more orangey yolks than others) and from bugs and greens that they eat.

          September 16th, 2012 12:16 am Reply
  • Susan

    My friend almost passed out when I told her I spend 4.50 on a dozen eggs from my local farmer (I’m in CA). She asked why I just don’t buy them from Trader Joe’s because they have organic free range eggs for much cheaper. I explained to her that I had read about Joe’s egg farmers trimming their chicken’s beaks. How can a chicken with half a beak forage? I couldn’t get her to understand why foraging was important or even why exercise was necesarry or why their beaks were needed, for pete’s sake!! I’m going to send this article to her!!

    September 15th, 2012 10:52 am Reply
    • Sarah, TheHealthyHomeEconomist


      September 15th, 2012 10:53 am Reply
  • jason and lisa

    awesome.. thank you so much..

    -jason and lisa-

    September 15th, 2012 10:40 am Reply
  • Candyce C. Fleming

    Was a vegetarian for a loooong time and finally became Vegan almost three years ago. I am amazedg that as aggressive as I am in striving to purchase wisely – there is always so much more to know. My husband is NOT vegan, so my goal is to be as ethical as possible in my purchasing choice for him. This article WOWed me.. and was another strong root in my choice to be vegan. Great share!

    September 15th, 2012 10:37 am Reply
    • Sarah, TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      Yes indeed. The information I came across while researching for this article disturbed me as well. There is no substitute for a personal relationship with the people who produce your food.

      September 15th, 2012 10:53 am Reply
    • Trisha

      While I totally respect your decision to be vegan, if it is because of animal welfare issues, there are ways to find ethically raised meat and dairy. Get to know the farmers in your area. You may have to enjoy a drive in the country one weekend to do it :-) I raise my hens 100% free range. They come and go as they please and are safely closed in only at night. They are allowed to range and scratch and eat bugs etc all day everyday.
      My dairy cow is on a grassy pasture all spring, summer and fall. We have deep snow here in the winter, so she is in a barn with a paddock attached and she gets to come and go as she pleases all day and night.
      I believe in raising food that is nutritious and lives a happy life while they are with me. Of course my dairy cow will be with us many many years as will our laying hens and they will get the best we can provide.
      I hope you are able to find such a place to buy eggs for your husband…and possibly even for yourself one day.

      September 15th, 2012 10:59 am Reply
      • Dani Shipp

        Hi Tricia,
        Everyone I know that raises chickens for eggs and even Vital Farms supplements with grain feed, most containing soy. Vital Farms website discusses adding soy and says that not using soy means adding blood/bone meal. Does anyone only pasture feed?

        September 27th, 2012 1:08 pm Reply
        • Juliana

          My parents found that they always had to supplement with a grain feed, in our California foothills climate. Now that their chickens have all aged past egg-laying years, I buy mine from a local farmer who sells either “regular” eggs from hens supplemented with standard organic feed, or “soy-free” eggs from hens supplemented with a grain feed where the soy component is replaced with sesame seeds. So — sesame is apparently an option.
          And to address other comments above, thickness of the shell is a function of the minerals (esp calcium) in the diet, and so it can vary quite a bit with pastured hens, since their diet varies with the seasons. My parent’s chickens roamed in their orchard, and when there was a lot of fruit on the ground they always had to drastically increase the calcium component of their feed mix or the shells would be too weak.

          October 10th, 2012 6:19 pm Reply
  • jason kirkland

    has anyone heard of vital farms?? any news on them?? they claim to be on pasture and any grain that does get used is organic and non gmo.. the shells seems tough and the yolk is tough and orange.. eggs taste great too.. weve been happy but after reading this was just wondering if anyone had heard anything bad about them..

    -jason and lisa-

    September 15th, 2012 9:25 am Reply
    • Sarah, TheHealthyHomeEconomist

      They sound like a winner! Taste, color, and hardness of the shell tell the tale in my experience.

      September 15th, 2012 9:27 am Reply
      • sandybt

        Mankind has been consuming cooked animal protein for countless generations. The invention of fire goes way back. If this is such a completely denatured food, how have we managed to survive and reproduce, and how did the primitive tribes studied by Weston Price and others enjoy such excellent health?

        September 15th, 2012 1:40 pm Reply
        • Liz

          The tribes studied by Weston Price had an infant mortality rate of a third. They’re life expectancy was 35 and they went incredibly long stretches of not eating. People have excellent teeth when they don’t eat for days on end. If you want to go back to their lifestyle, nothing is stopping you. (although, if you’re older than 35, you should really count your lucky stars we have modern medicine, modern agriculture and easy access to clean water that helped you reach the age you are now).

          September 15th, 2012 3:08 pm Reply
          • Ursula

            Where did you get those ‘facts’ from, Quackwatch? Because it was Stephen Barrett, who is a complete fraud (and a shill for the pharmaceutical companies), who said what you are claiming as the truth.
            In fact, this is the truth:
            “Price extolled the health of those groups who were healthy, and described the high rates of infant mortality, endemic diseases and malnutrition in the groups that were not healthy. Much of the value of his research comes from the fact that he was able to observe healthy and unhealthy groups of the same racial stock side by side, and thereby demonstrate the correlation between diet and disease. Although we will never be able to ascertain the life expectancy of the primitive peoples he studied, Price noted great longevity among certain groups, such as the Eskimos and the South Sea Islanders.
            And in fact, you’re totally wrong about malnourished people having great teeth, that’s how much you know! Cavities are actually caused by malnutrition and poor diet.

            September 15th, 2012 11:44 pm
        • Oliver

          Mankind has been killing protiens for as long as it has been cooking them. The reason we have “managed” is because we still ate other raw foods that still had vitamins and minerals and proteins in them.
          Just because we started barbecuing we didn’t just stop eating raw foods – just like today where we include salads and fruits and nuts etc into our diet.

          September 15th, 2012 7:20 pm Reply
        • Doug Baumber

          RE RAW FOOD HUMANS HAVE BEEN COOKING FOR ABOUT 2.5 MILLION YEARS.it is one of the great evolutionary breakthroughs. Cooking pre-predigests and eliminates food poisoning bacteria.

          The raw food group are way off base. If you eat raw eggs u fail to denature a toxin that destroys biotin. In WWII their was a problem with fighter pilots shot down. They would raid farms and eat raw eggs- which eventually poisoned them giving them severe B deficiency resulting in extreme fatigue.

          In plant material – humans cannot breakdown cellulose- by cooking u break down the cell wall so u can absorb intracellular as well as extracellular material.

          RE Broccoli . Raw broccoli has compounds that cause thyroid dysfunction. Cooking destroys that compound.
          In an interesting study re raw verses cooked meat. they compared cooked verses raw meat fed to a snake. the snake obtained 50% more energy from the cooked meat.
          My chickens love it when i cook them broccoli- which they can not eat raw- and puree for them.

          November 8th, 2012 7:05 pm Reply
      • Ursula

        The reason our kids are so unhealthy is vaccines, lack of fats and real nutrients and too many carbs, as well as GMOs and toxins in our food, air and water (like fluoride). Not because they’re eating cooked eggs.

        September 15th, 2012 4:50 pm Reply
        • Little Mermaid

          the reason our kids are so unhealthy is because our infant mortality rate is so low. Imagine if 30% of the weakest kids died. That would leave only the healthy kids with healthy immune systems. Think about the herd immunity then! And THEN on top of that, only the healthy babies who made the cut will grow up and breed. We would become a super race. We should just get rid of all the vaccines, feed children bone broth, or let them starve if their too poor (since organic food, or pastured birds are expensive, especially if there is a disease breakout since we can not use antibiotics because then how will separate the strong from the weak?) Instead of giving kids vaccines, we should inject them with live polio!!!! If the kids survive that disease while starving, we’ll know that they were the genetic elite. Screw modern medicine.

          September 15th, 2012 5:35 pm Reply
          • Ursula

            Wow, little mermaid, how ignorant you are. North American statistics actually show that our infant mortality rates are abysmal in comparison to even some countries considered third world countries. I think we’re something like 40th from the top.
            And the very reason our babies die IS vaccines! They kill and maim, and cause SIDS, autism, asthma, allergies, diabetes, auto-immune diseases……… We’re PRODUCING weak kids by what we do to them. Feeding them good food, giving them vitamins and allowing them to actually get some sunshine (instead of slathering on the sunscreen that assures a vitamin D deficiency) would give them a strong immune system. Vaccines have NEVER been proven to be safe or effective, and don’t prevent any illnesses at all.
            Actually, modern medicine is the second leading cause of death in North America, too, right behind heart attack. Doctors and hospitals kill scores of people.
            Statistics show that when antibiotics were introduced, mortality rates did NOT fall! Sure, they save some people. But overall, they haven’t been the ‘miracle’ everybody thinks they are.

            September 15th, 2012 11:09 pm
          • jason and lisa

            actually mermaid, ive taken that side before.. we are the only species since the beginning of time that has successfully done away with natural selection.. as a species weve allowed the gene pool to become weakened by our emotions.. we are the only species ever where the strong prop up the weak, the smart prop up the stupid and my favorite….. those who WILL work prop up those who WONT.. i think its interesting that we are the only species i can think of that is getting weaker.. we are breeding out the strength and brains and replacing it with docile, weak, stupid drones.. either way, thought it was interesting..

            -jason and lisa-

            September 16th, 2012 10:08 am
      • Karen DeWitt

        Dear Oliver,

        You sound just as open minded as you are asking Sarah to be. Thank goodness for people, well rounded, and unbiased as you. Able to look at the bare, obvious facts of science and the world around us. I too, used to make the mistake of feeding my children cooked foods, as part of a well balanced whole food diet, including many raw foods. Sure, my kids seemed healthy from the outside- well balanced immunes systems, minimal allergies, none of the eczema and asthma that seemed to plague children in the US. Sure they were vibrant, energetic and happy- but I knew better. I read some of the posts, links and articles by you and I learned the Truth.

        Sure it can be hard switching a 3 and 5 year old child to a raw diet, but I didn’t let that slow me down. They complained, they missed some of their (cooked) comfort foods, they certainly lost some weight and their pediatrician was concerned- but I was not. I knew better then her and than most. I understood the chemistry. They do get sick more often now, and their temperament is not quite as good. But I feel good- knowing that I am making the right choices for them.

        Naysayers claim I don’t know what I’m doing, that yes the facts I state are true but they must be taken in context- that some foods in fact have nutrients that more utilizable by our body if lightly cooked or processed. I just laugh at them. I understand the chemistry of how this food has more intact nutrients in in it’s original form, who needs context beyond that?

        September 15th, 2012 4:58 pm Reply
        • Ursula

          Wow, you’re saying that ‘they get sick more often now and their temperament isn’t quite as good’, but you’re not worried and are confident you’re doing the right thing.
          I expect you also aren’t giving your kids enough saturated fat and protein now. Both of which are VITAL for children’s growth, both physically and mentally.
          That they’re sick more often as well as being grumpy and losing weight is indicative of them being actually malnourished.
          Also, there ARE some foods that only unlock some nutrients through cooking. Carrots are rich in some nutrients when raw, but there are others you can’t get until you cook them.
          By the way, when you say you feed your kids a raw diet, does that include raw eggs and raw meat, or are you forcing them to be vegans? I hope it isn’t the latter. If you lived in Europe, you’d be charged with neglect and child abuse for feeding young children only vegan, raw foods. Kids have died because of that!

          September 15th, 2012 11:00 pm Reply
          • Roxanne

            Um…I think Karen was being sarcastic in her post….

            September 16th, 2012 3:46 pm
          • Jen

            I’m pretty sure she was being sarcastic with that comment. I hope so!

            September 16th, 2012 11:50 pm
    • Rachel B.

      They sell them in my grocery store but their pricey at $5.25/dozen.

      September 15th, 2012 3:29 pm Reply
      • Rachel Greenfield

        You only pay $5.25 for them?! They’re nearly $7 at my store! I’ve checked them out and they’re what they say they are, and they taste great too. I’ll pay it, but I wish stores around here didn’t jack the price up so high just because there are affluent people living nearby. The rest of us have to eat too!

        October 10th, 2012 7:23 pm Reply
    • Nicole, The Non-Toxic Nurse

      At our house it is either local pasture raised or Vital Farms. Vital Farms sells for $7.00 per dozen where I live and they are worth every penny. They are nearly impossible to crack and the yolks are deep golden yellow.

      September 17th, 2012 3:43 pm Reply

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