Beating Egg-Flation in the Food Industry
Eggs are considered a “superfood” and a “complete” protein, the standard against which other protein foods are measured. Eggs’ protein composition is ideal, containing all nine essential amino acids. They also offer essential omega-three fatty acids, Vitamin A, Vitamin B2, B5, and B12, phosphorus, folate, selenium, Vitamin D, E, and more. Eggs may be the most nutritious whole food available.
As a result, recent estimates suggest that the average American ate 279 eggs in 2022 – around five eggs a week1. The use of this versatile food has increased after the American Heart Association confirmed that the HDL cholesterol in eggs can be helpful rather than harmful.
Eggs are also traditionally affordable, quick, convenient to prepare and taste delicious. However, a recent “egg-flation” has made eggs less accessible to US consumers.
What Is Egg-Flation?
In November 2022, egg prices reached a historic 280.9% inflation high2. What happened to create this surprising situation?
Beyond the Covid-19 pandemic’s market and supply chain disruptions, an extended avian flu outbreak and elevated grain costs contributed with opportunistic corporation price gouging. As a result, while prices have dropped slightly, they will likely remain high throughout 2023.
Regardless, nearly half of US adults consume eggs as usual, especially among the older population. At the same time, according to CivicScience, one in every three US adults report eating fewer eggs or less often. One in every ten (11%) has stopped eating eggs3. Potentially also contributing to this decrease is the industry’s environmental impact.
The Environmental Impact of Egg Farming
The industry has had to transform to meet the increasing demand for eggs, resulting in reliance on intensive farming approaches. Unfortunately, although small-scale natural hen rearing has a relatively limited environmental impact, the same can’t be said for factory farming.
Technological advances and more efficient operations allow large-scale production. For example, battery hens are forced to produce 300 eggs annually instead of their natural 12, with the US generating more than 31 million eggs daily4.
Beyond raising significant animal welfare concerns, this egg “industrialization” is bad news for the environment. Consequences include climate change, land, water, human toxicity, and ozone depletion, with one dozen eggs estimated to produce a carbon footprint of 2.7kg, similar to milk production5.
Poultry manure is also a significant source of greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution, producing ammonia, nitrous oxide, and methane. In addition, producing chicken feed contributes to increased GHG emissions, habitat destruction, and deforestation.
So, what’s the solution for consumers, manufacturers, and bakers dependent on eggs?
Making and Baking Without Eggs: Egg Alternatives and Egg-Free Recipes
Choosing egg-free recipes is always an option, and a growing one, given the increase in plant-based eating. At the same time, this growing consumer focus on plant-based diets means increasing availability of egg alternatives; a market predicted to reach US1.53 million by the end of 20266.
Replacements include innovative plant-based developments such as spent brewer’s yeast, microalgae, and nature-identical egg proteins. These bioidentical proteins respond to cooking, baking, and whipping like hen’s eggs. They are also sustainable, requiring less land, energy, and water than factory farming.
These animal-friendly eggs are produced using fermentation to yield odorless, flavorless, made-for- purpose proteins. These clean and versatile proteins are then used alone or in combination with other ingredients to produce vegan, sugar- and GMO-free products fast and cost-effectively.
Plant-based, fermented, or lab-grown eggs may be the future. However, to futureproof your business, ensure you source pure, 100% natural, vegan flavor and aroma ingredients from Advanced Biotech.
Explore Eggless Excellence With Advanced Biotech
Can you beat egg-flation? Our taste and odor solutions are EU-certified and sustainably produced to deliver the flavor and aroma profile required for your egg (less) creation. Browse our range of pyrazines, thiazoles, distillates, and other extracts today, and contact us to place your order.