A bill that would change the amount of time between when an egg is candled and sold, and still be able to be labeled with the AA grade is advancing through the Arizona legislature.
Presently, eggs must be sold within 24 days of being laid in order to be called AA eggs. However, under legislation presented by Rep. Jill Norgaard, R-Phoenix, an egg could still carry the AA grade for up to 45 days after it is candled.
According to an Associated Press report on the ABC website, Norgaard says the bill would be beneficial as it would reduce food waste. She also said if the bill becomes law, it would drive down egg costs as it would entice out-of-state egg producers to ship eggs into Arizona and create a larger egg supply.
Norgaard’s bill, HB 2464, in late February was approved 47-12 by the Arizona House, with one member not voting. The Arizona Senate on March 26 unanimously approved by the Arizona Senate.
The bill will be subjected to one more vote in the House, before it is sent to Gov. Doug Ducey for final approval to become law.
When the current egg dating law was first enacted in 1984, testing showed that eggs met the AA standard of firmness of the yolk and the egg white through the first 24 days, but by the 25th day, usually one or more out of a dozen eggs did not meet those standards, Hickman told the newspaper. A similar set of tests done 30 years later, and those tests showed the same results.
Hickman said that eggs were not necessarily any less healthy for consumption, but there is the ethical dilemma of the eggs not meeting the standards that consumers are paying for and expecting.