Introduction

Numerous production and processing changes have occurred within the commercial egg industry over the past 20 years. Clearly, egg producers and processors feel that the quality of eggs being delivered to consumers in the United States is at an all-time high. Although not common, Salmonella enteritidis (SE) outbreaks essentially redefined consumer's views of egg quality. Prior to SE, egg quality was defined by consumers in physical and visual terms (e.g., size of the air cell, color of the yolk, height of the albumen), but the potential SE contamination has focused consumer attention on microbiological safety of eggs. Producers and processors work together to produce high quality and safe eggs for the consumer. Each step in the process of getting eggs from the farm to the consumer is briefly discussed in this article.

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