Have you heard about the recent bird flu outbreak? Well it really hasn’t become big news until recently. The outbreak started in December with reports of birds infected with the virus in Oregon and then in Washington and since has just continued to spread, causing May 2015 to be the highest month of infected birds from this outbreak.
Well, it is estimated that 80% of the birds that have been infected are laying hens. This has caused at least 10% off the nation’s egg supply to be affected by the outbreak. That number seems small, but according to economists and experts, this has already caused problems with the supply and demand of eggs, driving the prices of eggs up in the past few weeks…to only to continue to rise in price over the next while.
Eggs will be increasing in price…it’s a matter of fact and you might have already noticed it. The average price increases have been anywhere from .33 – .58 per dozen, depending on where you are at in the country. And as a result, products that contain eggs for production will probably increase in price like baked goods, ice cream and mayo (so you might want to stock-up on those too).
Well, not only that, but some stores have already implemented “egg rationing.” H-E-B stores across Texas are the first to implement “egg rationing” posting signs limiting customers to only three carton of eggs.
When will we see things get back to normal? Well, according to this Washington Post article: “Prices will probably return to normal when farmers are able to replenish flocks, but who knows when that will be,” said John Newton, who teaches agricultural economy at the University of Illinois. “The virus will have to die down, and flocks could take something like 100 days to replenish. At the moment, a carton of 18 eggs is costing me $5, which is a lot.”
Some are predicting that the heat of the summer will kill off the virus and it could replenish to normal several months after that, and the prices decline several months after that! But that’s just speculation and hope.
Why are we telling you this? Well, many of you might not care, but many of you might be like us and have a diet filled with lots of eggs along with trying to stay in budget.
Well, we recommend that you get to the store right away and stock-up on eggs and then learn to store and preserve them for the long haul! You can even keep those valuable egg shells for your gardens and yard and use the whole egg!
We have talked about eggs A LOT on our site. We have shared several ways to preserve including freezing eggs.
But we have also shared that eggs can actually last for a few weeks past expiration and they can even last unrefrigerated in a cool spot (like a basement) for up to 7-8 months by coating them in mineral oil. Yes, that sounds weird, but it’s true!
You don’t have to go to the extreme and coat your eggs in mineral oil if you don’t want, but you can take advantage of many of the ways to preserve eggs.
This also might be a good time to learn how to raise backyard chickens and produce your own eggs. 🙂
So where can you find more details about this valuable egg information as you prepare to stock-up? Well, on our egg page of course! 🙂