History of the Egg Products Industry
The egg products industry is not new. Egg dehydration began in the late 1800s in the central United States and processing of liquid and frozen egg products began around 1930 to 1940. When the Panama Canal opened and low-cost dried-egg imports from China entered the market, production of dried eggs dropped off in the U.S. The industry revived, however, to supply military and lend-lease needs during World War II. These early dried eggs did not possess the functional quality and market appeal of modern egg products. Fortunately, an increasing variety of good-tasting, easy-to-use egg products are available today due to significant breakthroughs in egg processing.
- Addition of ingredients to improve physical characteristics and functional performance, including:
- Carbohydrates, such as corn syrup and sugar, or salt to help preserve whipping properties of dried whole egg and yolk products
- Gums and starches to improve the quality of products that are precooked, frozen, thawed and reheated
- Salt, sugar or corn syrup to control gelation of frozen products containing yolk
- Skim dry milk solids and vegetable oil to improve texture and appearance of scrambled egg mixes
- Desugaring, or stabilization, the removal of natural glucose and other reducing sugars from eggs by microbial or enzymatic fermentation to prevent these sugars from reacting with amino acids to improve storage stability by eliminating a potential brown discoloration of dried egg powder during heat treatment for pasteurization and later drying;
- USDA-verified laboratory analysis and monitoring of pasteurization to ensure pathogen-free products;
- Automated egg-breaking equipment which separates egg whites, yolks and shells; and innovative processing and packaging technology.
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