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Organic Eggs washed in Chlorine Solution

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If you believe in buying organic foods, an article by an expert last week may have come as a shock to you. Dr.Mercola is a celebrity in the medical field and on the media circuit. He has an excellent website and a huge following on Facebook and other social networks. I often adhere to his advice.

His article"Why you don't want to buy organic eggs at the grocery store" raises the question what happens after organic eggs have been collected. Some states require that they are cleaned by washing them in a chlorine bath. That isn't exactly what I as an organic customer and ex organic farmer's wife expected to happen to the eggs labeled organic, grocery store or not. In addition, they undergo "a mineral oil coating before they are nestled into their cartons," the article continues. And the eggs are still allowed to carry the organic label.

My research took me to:

Guidelines for Certification of Organic Eggs and Meat Birds

Vermont Organic Farmers (VOF)

Northeast Organic Farming Association. There it says:

"The following egg wash ingredients are allowed for use in organic egg production:

么 偓"毱' Sodium hypochlorite 么 偓"毱' Potassium hydroxide, sodium hydroxide

么 偓"毱' Hydrogen peroxide 么 偓"毱' Sodium carbonate

么 偓"毱' Peracetic acid (Peroxyacetic acid)

Other additives/ Egg coatings: Mineral oil is not listed on the National List Section 205.605 and therefore may not be used to coat eggs after washing. Organic vegetable oils would be allowed for this purpose.

No sh*t, Sherlock!

Why coat eggs in any kind of oil, I wondered? So that they look shiny? Not quite, there is a scientific explanation for it.

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Ursula Siebert, originally a German teacher & lecturer turned businesswoman, lived in different European countries before coming to the USA. She is now a free-lance writer. Often tongue-in-cheek, she sees life and politics in the USA from the (more...)
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