Today in NC State History: Researchers make egg-celent find

June 8, 2014
By Chris Saunders

historyIconOne arm of the dairy industry was declining in the late 1980s as people were eating fewer eggs.

But on this day 26 years ago, NC State researchers announced a process they hoped would reinvigorate business and make distribution of liquid eggs to restaurants “over easy.”

eggFood scientists Kenneth Swartzel, Hershell Ball and Mohammed Samimi developed  a process they called Easy Egg. A machine would break the egg, beat it  and heat the resulting liquid at higher temperatures and for shorter periods than had been used in conventional processing. That ultra-pasteurization process allowed the researchers to keep the eggs refrigerated for six months without spoilage.

“Currently mass-food outlets such as restaurants and cafeterias use frozen eggs to make omelets and cakes,” the Technician reported. “Swartzel and the other researchers say the new product does not need to be frozen and so will take less energy and money to store and distribute.”

Researchers described Easy Egg as a yellow liquid resembling orange juice and smelling like egg. Morning Glory Eggs, which is based in Richfield, N.C., purchased the license rights to the product, with its parent company, Michael Foods, owning exclusive licensing rights.


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