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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Microbiological and Product Quality Consequences of Housing Laying Hens in Production Systems

Location: Egg Safety and Quality

Title: Dynamic and Static Shell Properties of White and Brown Shell Eggs Exposed to Modified-pressure Microcrack Detection Technology

Authors
item Jones, Deana
item Broussard, V. -
item Lawrence, Kurt
item Yoon, Seung-Chul
item Heitschmidt, Gerald

Submitted to: Poultry Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 22, 2012
Publication Date: September 15, 2012
Citation: Jones, D.R., Broussard, V., Lawrence, K.C., Yoon, S.C., Heitschmidt, G.W. 2012. Dynamic and Static Shell Properties of White and Brown Shell Eggs Exposed to Modified-pressure Microcrack Detection Technology. Poultry Science. 91:2658-2661.

Interpretive Summary: Shell quality and integrity are important to ensure safe, high quality eggs reach consumers. The shell is the first line of defense for external microbial contamination. Impairment of the shell allows microorganisms to more easily enter the egg contents. Technology has been developed utilizing modified pressure and imaging technology to detect very small cracks in egg shells, also known as microcracks. Research has shown the modified pressure imaging for microcracks does not affect interior egg quality nor contribute to Salmonella migration through intact shells. A study was conducted to determine if exposure to the modified pressure microcrack detection system altered the dynamic shell properties of brown and white shell retail eggs. Exposure to the system did not change shell dynamic stiffness or egg weight for either shell color. Therefore, imaging eggs with the modified-pressure microcrack detection system does not affect the dynamic properties of intact brown or white retail shell eggs.

Technical Abstract: Dynamic and static shell properties of eggs provide important insight to egg quality. Understanding how processing and handling procedures affect both dynamic and static shell properties can enhance the safety and quality of egg reaching consumers. A study was conducted to determine if dynamic shell properties are altered due to modified pressure microcrack detection technology exposure in brown and white shell eggs. Three replicates of 100 eggs each brown and white retail shell eggs were conducted. Dynamic stiffness (Kdyn) and egg weight were monitored immediately prior and after microcrack detection. No changes in Kdyn or egg weight were detected for either shell color. Static compression shell strength and deformation were subsequently monitored and correlation analysis conducted. A strong correlation (R = 0.53; P < 0.0001) between Kdyn and static compression shell strength was seen for extra large white shell eggs. A smaller (R = 0.31; P < 0.0001) positive correlation was found for large brown eggs. The use of modified pressure microcrack detection technology did not affect shell dynamic properties.

Last Modified: 10/20/2014
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