Why Americans Refrigerate Eggs | Foundation for Economic Education:
"A few years ago, I bought some fresh eggs from a friend who owned chickens.
They were wonderful.
I’m not fussy about the topic so I can’t say that I go out of my way to get fresh eggs.
I’ll take them when I can get them.
However, I’ve long been intrigued by her instructions to me: “they do not need to be refrigerated.”
This struck me as weird.
I guess I thought they would spoil if they are left out or maybe gradually become a chicken or something.
She assured me no, and her explanation was compelling.
If eggs have never been refrigerated, they don’t have to be.
Commercial eggs are, so that’s why we put them in the fridge.
But it turns out that the story is actually more complex.
No surprise: the real answer has to do with government regulations over whether eggs should be washed.
In the United States, the government mandates washing eggs before commercial sale.
In Europe, egg washing is forbidden by law.
Doesn’t that just sum up the problem of government?
It tends toward either mandating or forbidding in every area of life, even on matters such as whether eggs should or should not be washed.
The FDA explains that they are only saving you and me from horrible diseases.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced a regulation expected to prevent each year approximately 79,000 cases of foodborne illness and 30 deaths caused by consumption of eggs contaminated with the bacterium Salmonella Enteritidis.
The regulation requires preventive measures during the production of eggs in poultry houses and requires subsequent refrigeration during storage and transportation.
Egg-associated illness caused by Salmonella is a serious public health problem.
Infected individuals may suffer mild to severe gastrointestinal illness, short term or chronic arthritis, or even death. Implementing the preventive measures would reduce the number of Salmonella Enteritidis infections from eggs by nearly 60 percent.
Meanwhile, in Europe, the regulators explain that the forbidding of egg washing is only saving people from horrible diseases:..."