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Australian egg consumption jumped from 198 to 213 per person last year, and chances are many of 2011’s additional boiled, scrambled, fried and poached egg servings were laid on free-range farms, according to Stock and Land’s website.

With long term annual growth running at about 5 percent a year, compared with our population growth of 1.5 percent, eggs are clearly a central part of the national diet, said Australian Egg Corporation executive director James Kellaway.

Although a big portion of egg production goes direct to the food processing, baking and food service sectors, retail sales last year amounted to 128.4 million dozen, worth AUD$523.5 million.

Free range retail egg sales peaked at 43 million dozen, up a massive 24 percent on 2010 levels and 64 percent above the five-year average.

Cage egg retail sales dipped 1 percent in 2011 to 71 million dozen, and barn-laid retail egg sales fell 3 percent on the year to 11 million dozen.

“We believe the higher consumption is due to new science that proves eggs don’t increase cholesterol as previously thought, and that people can safely eat six eggs a week, according to the Heart Foundation,” Kellaway said.

“Science also shows egg consumption can help people with diabetes and assist reduce obesity in the community.”

On a global scale, however, Australia’s hunger for eggs lags well behind Mexico, where consumption was a whopping 365 per head last year, and Japan at 324 each.

Source: Stock and Land

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