Many Vietnamese chicken eggs sold on the market here are in fact Egyptian, which are similar to Vietnamese chicken eggs in appearance but different in nutritional content.
Recently, a type of chicken egg with very similar size and color to Vietnamese chicken eggs have been offered for sale at markets in Hanoi at the discount price of VND3,500 (US 15 cents) each.
Meanwhile, Vietnamese chicken eggs sold in rural markets are usually priced from VND4,500 (20 cents) to VND6,000 (27 cents) per egg.
According to Nguyen Duc Trong, vice director of the Hanoi department of livestock production, the chicken eggs sold in the city’s markets are in fact eggs from Egyptian chickens or crossbred chickens.
The foreign hens can produce 180 to 220 eggs a year, compared to an output of 120 eggs per year for carefully selected Vietnamese hens and 80 eggs per year for normal Vietnamese hens.
Many farmers in the Southeast region said that there are not usually enough eggs from free-range Vietnamese chickens to sell, since chickens raised in this way often grow very slowly, give birth to very few offspring, and have an extended period of hatching.
Furthermore, most farmers who raise Vietnamese chickens for eggs are doing so on a very small scale, so eggs from domestic chickens are often very expensive.
Even in areas where Vietnamese chickens are raised, the number of eggs hatched are normally only enough to provide for one’s own family and neighbors, with prices ranging from VND 4,000 (20 cents) to VND 5,000 (23 cents) per egg.
It’s therefore not unreasonable for Vietnamese chicken eggs to be sold at between VND 3,000 (13 cents) and VND 3500 (16 cents) in supermarkets.
“Vietnamese chicken eggs sold in supermarkets are actually from industrially-raised Egyptian chickens in many cases. Due to their similarities in size and color, many are able to trick consumers,” Nguyen Van Khoa, a farmer from Dong Nai Province said.
According to Kim, a farmer and a wholesale egg supplier at Cho Gao market in Tien Giang Province, Vietnamese chicken eggs sold at supermarkets in the north are actually from industrially-raised Vietnamese chickens from the south, often bought at a price of VND 1500 (7 cents) to VND 2,000 (9 cents) per egg.
Meanwhile, a large quantity of Egyptian chicken eggs from the north are being sold in the south under the name “Vietnamese chicken eggs.”
Trong said that even though the two types of eggs are similar in appearance and even in taste, Vietnamese chickens are nutritionally better.