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Eggs Weigh Less Than They're Supposed To!!!

mlculler Aug 16, 2011 11:18 AM

I use XL eggs in many recipes, and I started weighing them after buying. Turns out, I'm getting ripped off. Out of an 18-pack of XL eggs, 1 was broken on the bottom (I couldn't see that when checking in the store), 7 were 62 grams (which is LARGE), and only 9 were XL/64 grams. What is the deal? I even bought JUMBO eggs, and only ONE was JUMBO. The rest were XL, according to their weight.

Anyone else have this problem? And where do I complain? XL eggs do cost more, but I'm just getting LARGE eggs in their place. I've bought the LARGE before, and, you guessed it---most of them were of MEDIUM weight.

Any advice would be welcome!

  1. f
    ferret Aug 16, 2011 11:23 AM

    Is this a consistent result or just a single carton? And did you compare with another vendor's eggs? The shells are permeable and do lose water over time (that's why "older" eggs have a large air space inside). The carton should be marked with the packing date which is the last 3 digits of the code above the "Sell By" date - corresponding to the day of the year they were packed (e.g. "100" being the 100th day after January 1)

    4 Replies
    1. re: ferret
      mlculler Aug 16, 2011 11:25 AM

      This has been consistent for the last several months. It's the same store (Publix), and they're always newer ones with a "Sell by" date of 4-5 weeks away.

      1. re: mlculler
        f
        ferret Aug 16, 2011 11:31 AM

        But is it from the same producer or do you get the same result with all producers?

        1. re: ferret
          mlculler Aug 16, 2011 11:37 AM

          Not sure. These are the regular store brand ones, not organic or local. It just happens each time I buy them. I can pretty much be assured that I'll get maybe half that are the correct weight. I've bought eggs from Sam's many times, and their large ones tend to be quite heavy, weighing as much as XL or Jumbo every time I buy them.

          1. re: mlculler
            f
            ferret Aug 16, 2011 11:45 AM

            Well, there's your answer. If the store's supplier is playing fast and loose bring it the store's attention. And then keep buying from Sam's.

    2. BananaBirkLarsen Aug 16, 2011 11:27 AM

      I've been buying medium eggs recently, due to the fact that they've been on sale, and have also noticed that they seem really really small. I don't have a scale to corroborate, though.

      1. Uncle Bob Aug 16, 2011 11:29 AM

        Weight per dozen..... minimum.........USDA

        Jumbo 30 ounces
        Extra Large 27 ounces
        Large 24 ounces
        Medium 21 ounces
        Small 18 ounces
        Peewee 15 ounces

        8 Replies
        1. re: Uncle Bob
          mlculler Aug 16, 2011 11:32 AM

          So as long as the dozen weighs the right amount, individual eggs can be far below the minimum?

          1. re: mlculler
            Uncle Bob Aug 16, 2011 11:40 AM

            Individual eggs do not matter....it's the total weight of a dozen....

            1. re: Uncle Bob
              f
              ferret Aug 16, 2011 11:47 AM

              That's not entirely accurate; while there's variation within a size range the eggs are graded by their individual size. They don't just pack random-sized eggs into a carton and hope they meet their weight goal.

              1. re: ferret
                Uncle Bob Aug 16, 2011 11:57 AM

                Well, yes.....Grading machines usually spit them out to assure USDA guide lines per dozen.

          2. re: Uncle Bob
            greygarious Aug 16, 2011 11:37 AM

            Precisely, so to speak! It's not reasonable to expect every birdie to lay identical eggs every time. I have noticed that the largest eggs in the carton are usually the ones on the right, the smallest on the left. So if I am baking something where precision may be important, I play Goldilocks.....or should I say Goldiyolks?

            1. re: greygarious
              paulj Aug 16, 2011 11:59 AM

              I imagine a large egg producer runs thousands of eggs down conveyor belt with precision scales (better than the OP's) and sorting mechanisms. Since the USDA spec has a 2 parts, minimum weight and average weight, they could, in theory, load a carton with a mix of eggs in which:
              - all meet the minimum requirement
              - together they meet the average requirement
              and to do that load the carton with a mix of eggs that are large for the size (but just under the minimum for the next size up), and eggs that just meet the minimum. But to do that efficiently would require a sophisticated packing software, and a very large volume of eggs.

              If you need precision, I think it would be better to invest in your own scale, rather depend on position in the carton.

              The only time I weighed my eggs was when I tested a boiled egg timing formula that required the egg weight along with the starting temperature and target temperature of the yolk/white boundary.

            2. re: Uncle Bob
              paulj Aug 16, 2011 11:46 AM

              And by
              http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/getfi...
              56.281 table 1
              individual XL eggs must not be less than 26oz/dozen
              That translates to 61.4 g min weight for an XL egg, and 63.8g avg weight.

              OP's eggs meet the min weight requirement. The OP would need to weigh all the eggs together to calculate whether they meet the average weight requirement.

              1. re: paulj
                paulj Aug 16, 2011 12:46 PM

                I just checked the weight of a carton of Large eggs: 24.5 oz after zeroing out the weight of an empty carton. This is .5oz above the USDA minimum for a dozen in this size. I do not notice any difference in the size of individual eggs (by sight, not weight).

            3. n
              neel2004 Aug 18, 2011 08:30 PM

              I find that egg sizes vary pretty strongly by store here in Atlanta. I've never thought to weigh the eggs, but I have seen several times (when alternating where I buy eggs) that Wal-Mart large eggs always seem to be larger than Kroger's. I don't think Kroger's are out of spec, but Walmart's are always bigger.

              2 Replies
              1. re: neel2004
                paulj Aug 18, 2011 08:37 PM

                I wonder if you would notice the same difference if you switched eggs and cartons?

                1. re: paulj
                  n
                  neel2004 Aug 18, 2011 08:49 PM

                  I have tried that -- I'll often end up with a dozen carton with a few eggs from each store (separated and different sides labelled with the right date). The difference still stands.

              2. ipsedixit Aug 18, 2011 09:04 PM

                Was the carton sealed?

                If not, how do you know some miscreant didn't get there before you and started to swap out eggs from the Large carton with the ones from the XL carton?

                1. coll Aug 19, 2011 03:53 AM

                  I've been informed that the hens are laying much smaller eggs right now due to the extremely hot weather, and that XL shouldn't even be available right now. Guess they are moving everything up a notch to keep (most) customers happy. Same with cows, they produce less milk during heat waves and the price is way up for now. Which extends to cheese. And so on and so on.......lucky for us that fall is around the corner.

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