Life's Little Mysteries

Why Aren't Turkey Eggs Sold at the Grocery?

turkey, turkey eggs, eggs, grocery store, supermarket
Chicken eggs make more sense financially as a grocery market staple than do turkey eggs. (Image credit: 13dede |

As you pick up your turkey at the grocery store this week, you might wonder why you never see the birds' eggs for sale. Gobbling turkeys do lay eggs. But selling them in grocery stores would have its drawbacks.

Turkey eggs’ small numbers and big size make them less practical for the poultry section.

Chickens start reproducing early and pump out more eggs than turkeys. The larger size of turkey eggs requires more room to nest, which takes up too much space in a coop. Economically, meat from a grown turkey bird is much more valuable than an extra large fried egg.

Plus, some breeds of turkey have retained a strong mothering instinct, which is good for hatching chicks but tough on farmers trying to collect the eggs.

If you still want turkey eggs , your best bet is to try a farm stand. Or buy a live turkey and wait for it to lay an egg.

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Corey Binns lives in Northern California and writes about science, health, parenting, and social change. In addition to writing for Live Science, she's contributed to publications including Popular Science,, Scholastic, and the Stanford Social Innovation Review as well as others. She's also produced stories for NPR’s Science Friday and Sundance Channel. She studied biology at Brown University and earned a Master's degree in science journalism from NYU. The Association of Health Care Journalists named her a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Health Journalism Fellow in 2009. She has chased tornadoes and lived to tell the tale.