British food agency issues new advice on egg consumption

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The British food agency has revised its stance on egg consumption in an effort to curb food waste and now deems it safe to eat eggs a day or two after their "best before" date, provided they’re cooked thoroughly.

In a statement made Wednesday, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) changed its original position, which advised against eating eggs after their "best before" date out of concern for salmonella poisoning.

But after another review, the FSA found that salmonella contamination levels in eggs produced in the UK are low. Furthermore, salmonella is killed in the cooking process.

To make sure the eggs are fully cooked, the yolk and the whites should be solid and opaque. It’s likewise safe to use such eggs in dishes like cakes and pastries where they would be consumed cooked.

The agency also reminds consumers that most foods can be safely eaten after the best before date on the package, as the label serves as simply a time stamp which measures quality, rather than safety.

“Past this date, it doesn't mean that the food will be harmful, rather that its flavour, color or texture might begin to deteriorate,” reads the statement.

However, it’s important to make the distinction between "use by" -- which should be followed -- and the "best before" label.

Meanwhile, this week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a report advising consumers to refrain from eating ready-to-bake cookie dough which can contain pathogens like E. coli.