Mother Earth Living

How Much Do You Know About Eggs?

Test your knowledge about both the chicken and the egg.
By Natural Home Staff
March/April 2004
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Photo By Joe Coca

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Test your knowledge about both the chicken and the egg.

1. What does it mean if an egg is labeled “organic”?
a) Chickens eat food made without toxic or persistient insecticides, pesticides, genetic engineering, sewage sludge, or animal-derived protein.
b) Chickens move around freely.
c) Chickens are raised without antibiotics, added growth hormones, or genetic modification.
d) The eggs have not been irradiated.
e) All of the above

2. Which of these egg-related labels is verified by third-party inspectors?
a) Free range: Chickens have unrestrained access to the outside world.
b) Cage free: Chickens are not restricted to cages.
c) Free farmed: Poultry was raised with adequate space and comfort, and without unnecessary antibiotics.
d) Natural: Eggs are minimally processed and free of artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives.

3 You can dye Easter eggs using food and spices, true or false?

4 How long will raw eggs keep beyond their pack date?
a) 5 days
b) 1 to 2 weeks
c) 4 to 5 weeks

5 How long does it take a hen to produce an egg?
a) 24 to 26 hours
b) about 48 hours
c) 8 to 10 hours


1. e) All of the above. The USDA certifies eggs as organic but does not oversee any other claims such as “cage free” or “natural.” (The Green Guide)

2. c) Free farmed. In accordance with American Humane Association standards, this claim is the only one currently verified by third-party inspectors. “Free range” is only defined for chickens that are eaten, not those that lay eggs. “Cage free” guarantees chickens aren’t housed in cages, but not that they have access to the outdoors. Without a third party, the veracity of these terms depends on the honesty of the egg producer.

3. True. Boil a batch of eggs, then add high-color food ingredients and two tablespoons white vinegar for each quart of water. Boil the eggs for approximately half an hour. For green, use spinach (four cups per quart of water); for pale yellow, use ground turmeric; for lavender, use purple grape juice; for pink, add beet juice (4 cups, shredded, per quart of water). When finished, rub the eggs with vegetable oil to give them a soft sheen. (The Green Guide)

4. c) 4 to 5 weeks, so long as they’re kept refrigerated in their carton. Hard-cooked eggs can be refrigerated for up to one week. (American Egg Council)

5. a) 24 to 26 hours. Then the industrious hen starts all over again. (Egg Innovations)

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