The U.S. Produced Enough Eggs in January to Reach the Moon

07:30AM Mar 01, 2019
Sorting Eggs
Per-capita consumption of eggs projected to reach highest in decades.
( Daniel Acker, Bloomberg )

Americans can’t seem to get enough eggs.

The U.S. produced 9.41 billion eggs in January, according to government data. That’s enough to go to the moon and halfway back if you stacked them together. January’s total was the second-largest on record, falling just 0.3 percent lower than the all-time high set in December.

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Per the U.S. Department of Agriculture breakdown, 8.2 billion eggs were used for table consumption, with 1.2 billion used to hatch more chickens. Of the table eggs, the agency projected just 3.7 percent to be exported. All those eggs stacked lengthwise would be a staggering 338,581 miles (544,890 kilometers).

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Americans are projected to each eat 279.2 eggs in 2019, according to the USDA’s latest per capita forecasts published in its World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report. That would be the highest in since 1973, according to the agency’s Economic Research Service. Even as it’s way down from the 1945 high of 404.6 eggs, it reverses a low of 228.8 set in 1995.

While the total chicken count can be tough to estimate given the short life span of broilers consumed by humans, the latest USDA tally puts the number at 392.8 million, about 67 million more than the 2018 U.S. population estimate.