Did you know that eggs are a "potentially hazardous food"? In Europe the eggs were sold from a shelf and not even refrigerated... no one got sick.
I was told by the Pa Dept. of Ag that have to buy an $82 license if I want to sell eggs at Farmer's Market. I sell a few dozen eggs each week and I would have to sell 41 dozen eggs to make that up! My eggs are now contraband. I'll be giving them away - and if you would like to throw a couple of dollars ($2)? towards chicken feed it would be greatly appreciated. I'll put a donations can up on the stand. It's more economical for me to give away eggs or feed them to the pigs than it is to pay an $82 fee!
Here's what past guidelines have been and now I guess our current government administration has determined that an $82 license will make the eggs even safer:
For those producers with less than 3,200 laying hens, the following protocols must be followed for retail sale of shell eggs:
Eggs must be sold within five (5) days from the date of the lay. Are store eggs sold within five days? I think not.
Eggs must be sold predominately within a 100 mile radius of the production or processing facility. Again. How does this compare to store eggs? I'm pretty sure they're not coming from within an 100 mile radius
Eggs must be maintained at 45 degrees or less from the time of gathering to the time of sale. This includes the period of time when the eggs are at the farmers market. Done.
Each carton, flat or container of eggs must be labeled with the following:
o o o o o o
Name and address of producer Date of lay Fair enough. I put my phone number too. I want you to let me know if there's a problem with your eggs!
Statement of identity (Eggs) This would be in the event you can't recognize what you're buying?
Net contents (in letters at least 3/16 of an inch high) I guess for people who can't count.
“Keep Refrigerated” Egg handling instructions. Really?
If you do not weigh the eggs or if they are mixed sizes and you do not wish to assign a grade, the carton, flat or container must be labeled as “Unclassified.” O.K. My eggs are much better than store bought grade A eggs anyway.
Dirty, leaking or cracked eggs must be removed prior to sale. Yup, I always sell leaking and cracked egg to my customers (note the heavy sarcasm). I've had people complain that I wipe off the dirt because they say I'm removing the "bloom" - the natural protective coating on the egg.
I can understand if you're buying eggs from a huge corporation and Lord knows how they've been handled and how long they've been shipped and stored. But I'm at a Farmer's Market. I'm looking at your face and you're looking at mine. I'll be standing there next week and you know where I live!
It's time to put up a gravestone. This truly marks the death of common sense and personal responsibility.