General Question

stump's avatar

Are chicken eggs in the grocery store alive?

Asked by stump (3835points) April 15th, 2010

I know a lot of fruits and vegetables are alive when you buy them. You can plant them or put them in water and they will grow. And a fertilized egg is alive, of course, because it hatches into a chicken. But is an unfertilized egg alive? And if not, when do they die?

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31 Answers

syz's avatar

No. Commercial egg production produces unfertilized eggs.

SeventhSense's avatar

No they’re unfertilized

MissAnthrope's avatar

If it’s unfertilized, it’s not really alive.. it’s just an egg. Even if it was fertilized, I’d think the refrigerated conditions in which we store eggs would make the egg unviable, as well.

SeventhSense's avatar

You need a sperm and an egg to make a baby.
Careful out there Chippy…standing on your head won’t make a pregnancy go away either

stump's avatar

Are unfertilized eggs in people not considered alive?

SeventhSense's avatar

As per the human eggs: They have the potential for life but are rarely very good in an omelet.

dpworkin's avatar

Unfertilized eggs anywhere don’t meet the minimum requirements for life that you learned in fourth grade.

erichw1504's avatar

Leave them in your fridge and let me know when one of them hatches.

ragingloli's avatar

Well, I did once encounter an egg with formed blood vessels. Though I am not sure wether that really were blood vessels.

stump's avatar

There has to be another definition for life other than the one we learned in elementary school. As I recall, one of the requirements is reproduction. We can keep a heart alive for a while outside the body it came from, but a heart can’t reproduce, or resperate. Is blood that has been donated and is sitting in a bag in a cooler alive? Can something be biologically active and viable but not alive?

ucme's avatar

They’re bleedin demised.Joined the choir invisibule in point of fact.

Pretty_Lilly's avatar

No but the Yogurt in the refrigerated case is !

AstroChuck's avatar

No. Even fertilzed eggs at the supermarket are refrigerated. A fertilized egg has to be kept warm or the pre-chick inside will die.

MagsRags's avatar

Does anyone else have Month Python’s Every Sperm is Sacred stuck in their head now?

ucme's avatar

Bloody sperm get’s stuck everywhere,especially the heathens.

janbb's avatar

Just like an egg in a woman’s ovary is not “alive” until fertilized by sperm, a chicken’s egg is neither alive or dead unless it is fertilized. Occasionally when I was growing up we would open an egg that had a bloodspot in it which meant it had been feritilized by some randy rooster, but I think factory farms of today insure that no hanky-panky is going on in the coops.

sandystrachan's avatar

The have been chilled that kills / stops the development .

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

It’s organic but eggs at the store do not qualify as alive any more than the meats at the deli counter.

lilikoi's avatar

Well, idk if that’s the best analogy. Meat is dead because the animal was alive, and then someone conked it on the head and killed it. Unfertilized eggs were never alive.

@janbb Is that what the bloodspots mean? There are often bloodspots in eggs that I buy from a local producer. I looked it up quickly and read that it was a result of the laying chicken being stressed and that the spots are usually vaporized or something during quality control, but some get missed….Now I’m not sure…

janbb's avatar

That was my understanding from when I was a child and I grew up on a chicken farm. I may have misremembered it but that’s what I believe.

Jeruba's avatar

> Are unfertilized eggs in people not considered alive?

While they remain cells within the human body, they are as much alive as any other cells—as alive as skin cells on your arm, tissue cells in your stomach, and bone cells in your leg. But they are not viable—capable of supporting life on their own.

Hen’s eggs in a carton at the grocery store are no longer inside a living body that supports them. They haven’t died. They have never become alive in the sense of being a viable organism. They are unfertilized and unborn.

The fruits and vegetables aren’t alive; they are separated from the plant that supports them and takes in nourishment. They can’t do this themselves and will rot even if you try to feed them. They are not viable.

They may contain seeds (a pit, a bean, a kernel, etc.) that are capable of germinating (and being supported temporarily by the flesh of the fruit). A plant has this capability. An animal that is high enough in the chain to reproduce sexually doesn’t have a seed until a male and a female cell unite (= fertilization) to create one. No fertilization, no zygote, hence no seed, and hence not alive. The same is true of the tissue that a woman sloughs off when she has her period: not alive. Not fertlized.

gailcalled's avatar

Except for mint. Stick a sprig into a pot of water and presto, there are roots.

Jeruba's avatar

Ah, yes, you’re right, @gailcalled, and I’m no botanist. Cuttings can sprout roots as long as they get into water soon enough. I can’t explain how they do this, but I know they’re not the equivalent of a fertilized egg.

Trillian's avatar

@MagsRags, @ucme and his “choir invisible” made me think of Dead Parrot. Now I have the sperm song in my head though. Thank you! ;-)
@ucme, do you want to come ‘round to my place?

JeanPaulSartre's avatar

No, not alive, and no longer able to be fertilized. I’ll keep my other opinions on them to myself.

Marianna's avatar

Eggs are not alive. Neither are women’s eggs unless they are fertilized. I stopped eating eggs when I found out how factory farms raise them and keep them confined to lay their eggs. They cut off their beaks so they don’t peck at each other or themselves. Very cruel. Now I buy eggs again, they sell free ranging eggs, more expensive, but worth it!

gailcalled's avatar

@Marianna: I agree with you about the eggs; but they do not range freely. The chickens do.

Welcome to fluther.

janbb's avatar

@gailcalled Say it ain’t so!

gailcalled's avatar

@janbb: Egg, egg on the range

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