Delmarva Sees Impact from Midwest Avian Flu in Cost of Eggs - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Delmarva Sees Impact from Midwest Avian Flu in Cost of Eggs

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DOVER, Del. (WBOC) - Avian flu in the Midwest is egg-zactly the reason the cost of eggs is going up everywhere, including on Delmarva.

More than 35 million hens have died or been killed as a result of the bird flu outbreak, according to national egg industry representatives. An Iowa State University study says that's about 12 percent of the US flock.

The loss of all those hens, all those eggs, is having a huge effect on the cost of an egg nationwide. The egg market is a $10-billion industry in America.

Sit down for breakfast at Hall's Family Restaurant in Wyoming, and there's a better than good chance something you order is going to include eggs.

Kevin Nicolai's family was at Hall's Wednesday morning.

"We came to enjoy breakfast," he said. "My brother comes here often. He enjoys it here, so he thought he'd share it with us."

His order included eggs.

"I had scrambled eggs and bacon."

The wholesale cost of those eggs has gone up for Hall's. Owner Steve Hall says that happens with food.

"Usually the biggest fluctuation is in produce," Hall said. "We just absorb that cost as it goes up and hope that the average works out. That's the same thing we're doing now with these eggs."

Hall says because of what's happening in the midwest his egg suppliers tell him they aren't taking on any new customers and restricting existing customers only to their normal purchasing.

Thomas Crump was buying eggs at Byler's in Dover Wednesday afternoon. A store manager tells WBOC egg prices have skyrocketed and sales are down as a result. Crump has noticed the jump.

"I just have to deal with it. I don't like it. I eat a lot of eggs," Crump said.

Some stores are doing egg rationing. A grocery chain in Texas is actually limiting the number of egg cartons someone can buy at a time.

So prices have gone up at grocery stores, but Hall says restaurants aren't like grocery stores.

"They can adjust their prices on a daily or weekly basis. We can't change our menu like that."

So, customers at his restaurant aren't seeing any impact on the menu prices for now.

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