There are three consumer grades for eggs: United States (U.S.) Grade AA, A, and B. The grade is determined by the interior quality of the egg and the appearance and condition of the egg shell. Eggs of any quality grade may differ in weight (size). U.S. Grade AA eggs have whites that are thick and firm; yolks that are high, round, and practically free from defects; and clean, unbroken shells.
Grade AA and Grade A eggs are best for frying and poaching where appearance is important, and for any other purpose. U.S. Grade A eggs have characteristics of Grade AA eggs except that the whites are reasonably firm. This is the quality most often sold in stores. U.S. Grade B eggs have whites that may be thinner and yolks that may be wider and flatter than eggs of higher grades. The shells must be unbroken, but may show slight stains. This quality is seldom found in retail stores because they are usually used to make liquid, frozen, and dried egg products.
The UEP Certified logos identify eggs in the marketplace as produced by UEP Certified farms and signifies that the hens that laid the eggs were raised under science-based animal well-being guidelines. Each UEP Certified farmer is audited annually by a third-party inspector to ensure they comply with the guidelines.
Humane Farms Animal Care
Humane Farm Animal Care provides farmers with cage-free standards to ensure hens raised in barns are offered sufficient space and enrichments to maintain their normal behaviors. Laying hens in the Certified Humane program are raised under a set of standards developed by more than 40 animal welfare scientists and farm animal veterinarians from around the world.
American Humane Certified
American Humane is committed to ensuring the safety, welfare and care of all animals, including egg laying hens.
Eggs marked with the USDA’s National Organic Program label come from uncaged hens that are free to roam in their houses and have access to the outdoors. The hens are fed an organic diet of feed produced without conventional pesticides or fertilizers.
The Safe Quality Food (SQF) Program is a rigorous and credible food safety and quality program that is recognized by retailers, brand owners, and food service providers world-wide. Recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI), the SQF family of food safety and quality codes are designed to meet industry, customer, and regulatory requirements for all sectors of the food supply chain – from the farm all the way to the retail stores.
The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) provides federal grants to states for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age 5 who are found to be at nutritional risk.
The NPIP is a voluntary State–Federal cooperative testing and certification program for poultry breeding flocks, baby chicks, poults, hatching eggs, hatcheries, and dealers. The objective of the NPIP is to provide a cooperative State–Federal program through which new technology can effectively be applied to the improvement of poultry and poultry products by establishing standards for the evaluation (testing) of poultry breeding stock, baby chicks, poults, and hatching eggs with respect to freedom from certain diseases.
The Egg Safety and Quality Management (ESQM) Program within MPES is responsible for the regulatory authority for shell eggs and egg products produced, shipped, or sold in California. Eggs Unlimited is a registered Egg Handler in the state of California and one of the nation’s leading suppliers of California certified shell eggs and egg products.
The Arizona Egg Products Control program is part of the Arizona Department of Agriculture in the Animal Services Division. The program is responsible for the inspection of all shell eggs and egg products sold in the state. Eggs Unlimited is a registered and licensed dealer of eggs in Arizona.
HB20-1343 established enclosure requirements for farm owners or operators for eggs and egg products sold in Colorado. It also prohibits the business owner from selling or transporting for sale in Colorado eggs and egg products that are not from a cage-free farm. The rule establishes a certification process for confirming farms are cage-free and outlines a recordkeeping process to affirm eggs sold in Colorado are from a certified farm. Eggs Unlimited is a licensed supplier of eggs in Colorado.