The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services announced this week that Virginia’s 2014 egg production totaled 765 million eggs, up six percent from 719 million eggs produced in 2013. This data comes from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS). As we end May’s celebration of National Egg Month, VDACS wants to recognize the Virginia farmers who produce enough eggs to bake more than five million ham and egg casseroles, 190 million pound cakes or make more than 1.5 billion holiday eggnogs each year.
“We’re very proud of our farmers, large and small, who produce nutritious, high-quality eggs to help meet the demand in our state,” said VDACS Commissioner Sandra J. Adams. Large-scale egg production and processing operations in Virginia are located in Abingdon and Amelia County, with many smaller farms located throughout the Commonwealth.
The 2014 value of egg production in Virginia was $114 million, up 15 percent from $99.4 million in 2013, according to USDA NASS data. Virginia currently ranks 27th in the United States for egg production. Iowa, Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania and Texas are top egg-producing states. The U.S. value of all egg production in 2014 was $10.2 billion, up 17 percent from $8.68 billion in 2013. U.S. egg production totaled 99.8 billion eggs in 2014, up two percent from 97.6 billion eggs produced in 2013.
According to the American Egg Board, each laying bird produces from 250 to 300 eggs a year. Each year, about 60 percent of the eggs produced are used by consumers, about nine percent are used by the foodservice industry and the rest are turned into egg products which are used mostly by foodservice operators to make the meals we eat in restaurants and by food manufacturers to make foods like mayonnaise and cakes mixes.
Consumers who search VirginiaGrown.com for eggs will find 19 pages of listings where they can purchase local eggs. These include farmers’ markets, CSA subscriptions, farms, grocery stores and specialty shops. Under “more information,” each listing includes contact information, directions as well as a product list.