The main function of all methods of egg preserving is to prevent the entry and growth of spoilage micro-organisms. Chickens’ eggs are naturally well protected by their calcite shells and cuticle coating as they may have to keep sixteen to seventeen days after laying before brooding begins. Each egg is perforated with as many as 17,000 pores for exchange of gases and water by the embryo chick, but on laying the cuticle covers the majority of these. As the egg ages or is damaged these pores become exposed allowing free exchange of water and gases and penetration by micro-organisms. The action of all preservation methods for eggs in the shell is the blocking of the pores to prevent dehydration and infection.
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