A new training tool to teach egg grading skills is being made available to Australian egg producers and schools by Australia's Poultry Cooperative Research Centre (CRC). The Egg Grading Simulator has been written to run on either PC or Mac computers, and while the main purpose of the software has been for skill development in the workforce, it may also be a useful teaching aid in schools.
The simulator shows an egg candling table, with a mirror and candling light that can be switched on or off. Eggs roll pass the user, who has to identify a variety of defect types, which includes leaking, dirty, cracked, oversized or undersized, and misshapen eggs. A score card at the end of the simulation provides instant feedback to the user, who can see which eggs they have missed and gauge their level of accuracy in detecting and removing bad eggs.
The development of the simulator came about as the result of discussions with producers who identified difficulties involved with on the job candling training.
Common components from a number of grading systems have been incorporated into the software. Each simulator is customizable, meaning that each farm can adjust the combination of eggs to represent the flock they are currently packing, or suppress various egg types altogether if their farm has processes that remove them before they get to the candling table.