Egg Safety

Appears in
The Fundamental Techniques of Classic Cuisine

By French Culinary Institute

Published 2021

  • About

Although very, very few eggs carry internal bacterial infection at the beginning of their cycle, through improper handling or cooking eggs can become contaminated. Most often, the Salmonella enteritidis bacteria that can cause severe gastrointestinal illness are found to be the culprit. As well as being contracted through improper handling or cooking, these virulent bacteria can survive and grow in hens and subsequently be transmitted to the egg. This is a very rare happenstance—about 1 in 20,000 eggs—but it indicates that all eggs should be treated with respect. The yolk of the egg is generally the point of infection, with the white almost never infected. The bacteria rarely causes fatalities in healthy adults but can be extremely serious to infants and small children, pregnant women, the infirm, those with compromised immune systems, or the elderly.