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What do you know about the eggs you eat?

Professor Dr. Haider Tuma mehde , Assistant Dean for Scientific Affairs and Postgraduate Studies, Poultry Diseases Specialist

What we know about eggs is the price of eggs, and we know the way in which they are cooked, either (boiled or fried). Some questions may arise from time to time related to the egg such as the red dot, or drop of blood, and the yolk having a tendency to gray color. and also, among the questions:  Are there multiple types of chicken eggs?

Either it is one type, and are all eggs edible? How big are ostrich eggs compared to chicken eggs? And other questions in this context.

In this article, we will learn about some facts related to eggs. In addition, there is a lot of important information that this article does not have room for. To clarify this, we will have more than one article in this field.

Eggs are an important food item that is an essential component of the human diet. This is because they contain important nutritional elements, as eggs are considered one of the most important and best sources for obtaining protein with high biological value, vitamins (B2, B3), pantothenic acid (B5), betaine, B6, folic acid, B12 vitamins (E, D, A). Zinc and other vital and essential minerals and vitamins. It is also easy to digest.

Eggs are considered a nutrient store of important vitamins and nutrients, as they contain water, protein, saturated fatty acids, short saturated fatty acids, long unsaturated fatty acids, and fats. They also contain carbohydrates, vitamins, and choline. In addition, eggs contain all the important nutrients that ensure the formation of the embryo until it is completed outside the mother chicken’s body. All the embryo needs are a reserve in the egg, and what the egg needs is the necessary heat and stirring, so that the embryo can grow, develop, and hatch after a period of (21 days) of incubating the egg.

Eggs are classified according to the size or the weight into four types: the first is (small, which weighs less than 53 grams, the medium size ranges between 53 – 63, the large size ranges between 63 – 73, and the jumbo size is more than 73 grams). In most cases, jumbo eggs contain two yolks. Usually, one egg contains two yolks occurs at the peak of chicken production and productive activity. The production rate of this type of eggs, double yolk eggs, is two per thousand. Double yolk eggs are natural without any special feed additives or genetic modification on the chickens producing this type of eggs.

Regarding to the size of ostrich eggs, they range between (1300-1700 grams), with a general average (1500 grams), and the weight of one ostrich egg corresponds to the weight of 25 chicken eggs (with an average weight of 60 grams), meaning that one ostrich egg is enough to feed 10-12 individuals.

As for the second classification of eggs, there are two types. The first type is table eggs, which are intended for eating and human consumption. The second type is hatching eggs, which are prepared for incubation and hatching to produce chicks, which are of two types. The first type of chicks are broiler chickens, which are raised to produce meat, and the second type is laying chickens. The difference between table eggs and hatching eggs is that the latter are fertilized eggs, and the former are unfertilized. Egg fertilization requires raising males with females to produce fertilized eggs, while unfertilized eggs are raised by females without the presence of males. The females are separated from the males from the first day in the hatchery and immediately after hatching, based on the color of the chicks, where the males are white and the females are brown color. The males are isolated and neglected, and the females are raised only, without the males, to produce unfertilized eggs used for human consumption, called table eggs. Not fertilizing the eggs prolongs the storage life of the eggs without any embryonic development affecting the eggs.

As for the color of eggs, it is brown, and the second type is white. This depends on the genetics, not the type of chicken, and it has nothing difference in quality of the eggs, or the type of eggs, as they are both the same type and nutritional quality, but we see that some people prefer brown eggs over white, and this has to do with consumer taste.

Laying hens that produce table eggs lay up to 300 eggs in the first year of production. Production begins within 140 days, while brown chickens are delayed (10-15) days after this.

Ostriches’ eggs, female African black-necked ostriches, they lay the first egg at the age of 18 months – sexual maturity – while males are able to fertilize at the age of 24 months (two years). The female lays one egg every two days in a continuous series of eggs for 40 days – then the egg-laying period stops, and this cycle may be repeated again depending on the productive status of the herd.

How long do eggs last?

It is necessary to write the expiration date of eggs on the egg container itself. It is possible to store them in the shell in the refrigerator for a period of (3-5) weeks. As for boiled eggs, it is recommended to consume them within a week when kept in the refrigerator. Eggs can be preserved as long as they are raw and without a shell (the egg is broken and placed raw in a preservation container) for a period of up to (10) months at minus 18 degrees Celsius. As for boiled eggs, they are not suitable for preservation in the freezer. When storing eggs in the refrigerator, they must be placed eggs are in the designated place because the thin egg shell easily allows air to leak into the egg consequently the strong smell of onions, for example, can affect the smell of eggs.

Eggs contain a high percentage of proteins, including sulfur and hydrogen. The high temperature causes chemical reactions between these two substances and their union, and the color of the new element becomes greyish-green, which gives the yolk its strange color. The longer the eggs are boiled and the temperature rises, the stronger the color becomes

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