Quality & Grades of Eggs
All eggs sold at grocery stores must meet strict standards. Only those of high quality reach the consumer. Eggs must be checked for interior quality by candling, a process where eggs are passed over a strong light to show the shell and interior.
Changes in Quality Over Time
Eggs must be stored in the refrigerator to maintain Grade A quality. Eggs kept at room temperature deteriorate as much in a day as they do in a week under refrigeration.
As an egg ages:
- The AIR CELL becomes larger
- The YOLK becomes flatter, larger and breaks more easily
- The THICK WHITE becomes thin and watery
Eggs sold at grocery stores in Alberta are primarily Grade A eggs.When examined at the grading station, Grade A eggs must meet the following requirements:
- Thick white
- Round, well centered yolk
- Small air cell (less than 5 mm deep)
- Clean, uncracked shell with normal shape
Look for this symbol on egg cartons as your guarantee of top quality.
Canada Grade A Egg Weights
|Jumbo|| At least 70 grams
|| At least 63 grams
|Large|| At least 56 grams
|Medium|| At least 49 grams
|Small|| At least 42 grams
|| Less than 42 grams
- These eggs are mostly used for commercial baking or go to hospitals, restaurants, etc. Very few are sold at retail stores.
- Yolk is slightly flattened; white is thinner.
- Shell is un-cracked and may have a rough texture; and/or be slightly soiled and stained.
- The lowest egg grade, these are used in the production of processed egg products only. They are not sold in grocery stores.
- Yolk is flattened and may be oblong in shape; white is thin and watery.
- Shell may be cracked and/or stained.