Contamination of eggs in India : Here is all you need to know

How unhygienic Indian eggs are, take a look

Studies say Indian poultry farms have some chances of using contaminated feeds or feed ingredients without any knowledge of their nutritive value which can affect egg production which leads to unhygienic rearing practices and lack of quality control measures.


It is not just the poultry farmers but traders, exporters and even consumers are unaware of the health risks of egg contamination.

Developed countries take measures to sterilize the egg surface from contamination, especially from Salmonella enteritidis. But in India, no such measures are taken and risk of egg contamination has increased . India has become a leading poultry producer but there is a long way to reach the global market. Indian eggs are often rejected for export because of the presence of chemical residues on egg shells.

Recently, a number of eggs in the domestic market, in retail shops were collected and tested and were found to contain large amounts of salmonella both on the shell and inside the egg.

However, fresh eggs collected from farms indicated less salmonella contamination. Since most consumers buy eggs from retail outlets the chances of contracting salmonella infection increases, it represents lack of food safety procedures.

The FSSAI has proposed standards for fresh eggs in the Food Safety and Standards Amendment Regulations, 2017.

These standards will come into force once they are approved. FSSAI has laid emphasis on the storage conditions like moisture and temperature so as to reduce microbial contamination as microbial pathogens are a risk to human health.


Food Safety practices for eggs:-

Surveys suggest that consumers have less awareness of food safety risks of eggs as compared to other foods. Here are few points you need to follow when handling eggs to prevent cross-contamination:-

Egg handlers must wash hands with soap and clean surfaces and utensils. Containers that have been used to process raw eggs must not come in contact with ready-to-eat food.

Temperature of the refrigerator must be maintained at 33 to 40o F’. If eggs are left outside after refrigeration then they need to be discarded within two hours.

Refrigerate eggs only after they have been washedEggs must be consumed within two weeks. It is advisable not to eat raw eggs.

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