Vulnerable groups cleared to eat raw eggs

Pregnant women can now safely eat raw or lightly cooked eggs produced under the British Lion Code of Practice after the Food Standards Agency (FSA) revised its guidance.

The FSA said the new advice, which also applies to infants, children and the elderly, was due to a dramatically reduced risk of salmonella in eggs that have been produced to British Lion standards, which covers around 90% of UK eggs.

The previous advice for people in groups particularly vulnerable to infection was that they should not consume raw or lightly cooked eggs due to the risk of salmonella.

“The FSA has thoroughly reviewed the scientific evidence about the safety of these eggs, and we’re confident that we can now change our advice to consumers,” said FSA chair Heather Hancock.

Hancock noted that the major reduction in the risk of salmonella in Lion eggs was testament to the work carried out by egg producers. “The measures they’ve taken, from vaccination of hens through to improving hygiene on farms and better transportation, have dramatically reduced salmonella levels in UK hens,” she said.

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