Coles and Aldi have come under fire from social media users who are pushing for the supermarket giant to refrigerate their eggs to reduce the risk of salmonella.
Members of the public have taken to Twitter to question both supermarket chains about their storage procedures, highlighting the fact that Woolworths now keeps all of their eggs in refrigerated cabinets.
Frustrated customers are pushing for them to take Woolworths’ lead.
“Aldi and Coles please move eggs to cool fridge area,” one user wrote.
Another user has boycotted the store over the issue.
"I'm not buying eggs off the shelf so I go to woolies," she wrote.
@Coles I'm not buying eggs off the shelf so I go to woolies.
— Maddeson Heron (@maddekatie) January 10, 2016
Coles responded users by saying keeping the eggs cool ‘doesn't significantly reduce the risk of salmonella’.
After repeated enquiries from customers, Coles began to reply with a standard statement:
“We adhere to all health & safety regulations for egg storage. FSANZ advises there’s no need to refrigerate hen’s eggs to prevent bacterial growth, as long as they remain intact.”
While Aldi managed to avoid most of the attention, they did respond to Twitter users by saying:
@sydbusinspector FSANZ advises there’s no need to refrigerate hen’s eggs to prevent bacterial growth, as long as they remain intact. 2/2
— Coles Supermarkets (@Coles) January 11, 2016
“Our Supplier Standards require all our eggs to be delivered from farms at less than 15ºC degrees. The eggs are then transported to our air conditioned stores in temperature controlled vehicles on the same day as received.”
Salmonella cases are on the rise around the nation, causing serious illness and hundreds of hospital admissions every year.
Food Standards Australia and New Zealand said most food poisoning cases are caused by ‘uncooked or light-cooked foods’ that contained contaminated raw egg.
“While Salmonella can be sometimes present on the outside of eggs, it won’t grow, even at room temperatures, because the condition of the egg surface limits its growth,” the FSANZ said in a previous statement.
“While we acknowledge that refrigeration during retail storage may enhance the quality of eggs, this option was excluded early in the standard development process due to the nature of egg shell contamination in Australia and the substantial cost of implementing such an option.”
News break – January 11