SafeFood© and the Good Egg

I am sure all have heard about the national recall of fresh shell eggs; eggs that were produced at (as of now) two facilities in Iowa. In this past week, numerous inquiries regarding safety of fresh shell eggs have been raised. But there is not a need to panic – eggs are a food item with lots of bang for your buck, literally. They are packed with protein and relatively inexpensive. But, like other things of value, we shouldn’t mistreat them. That means keeping them:

  • chilled (under 45° F);
  • protect them from cracks (that is how bacteria can enter); and
  • handle them properly (wash those hands and cook thoroughly).

I appreciated the media announcements of the recall information. Sure enough, I looked in my fridge at home and had a half eaten cartoon of one of designated items (plant number 1946 with Julian date of 198 – not the lottery but still match). Fortunately – no symptoms from eggs we had eaten (likely because eggs in my house were hard cooked). The recall was a precaution; the risk of contamination from bacteria salmonella is historically low – 1 in every 20,000 eggs. New testing will spot presence of two strains of salmonella bacteria at the farm level – but consumer handling is also important.



Catherine Hemphill Strohbehn has been a faculty member at Iowa State University in the Hospitality Management Program for 30 years. She is a State Specialist with Human Sciences Extension and Outreach at Iowa State University. As part of her work, she conducts research, develops educational materials and provides programs to help retail foodservices use their resources effectively and ensure safe food is served. Cathy is a registered dietitian with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and a Certified Professional in Food Safety from the National Environmental Health Association.

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