A Brief History Of Eggs In India

By Avinash Mudaliar and Nirmalaya Dutta

Updated:Aug 18, 2023

It is interesting to see how egg vacillates between vegetarians and non-vegetarian in India. It’s a debate that has raged for decades. Even the world’s most proponent of vegetarianism Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi believed that while eggs and milk weren’t “strictly vegetarian” – a view held by vegans across the world –he believed that eggs were at least as “vegetarian” as milk

A Brief History Of Eggs In India

In Kota, now in the news for trying to prevent suicides with spring-loaded fans, I learned that restaurants that served meat could be located in only particular neighbourhoods, but eggs could still find its way to most places for daily consumption. And with good reason, eggs remain the cheapest source of protein for a major chunk of the population. As the old 80s slogan goes: “Monday ho ya Sunday roj khau anday (Whether it’s Monday or Sunday, eat eggs every day).”

So, how did eggs become popular in India?

And it’s a good reason, there are a variety of health benefits that would make eggs one of the world’s first superfoods. You can read about its health benefits here.

Veg or non-veg? That’s the question

However, it’s hard to argue against its health benefits and eggs made a great comeback in 1981. It was a time when the Indian poultry industry was on the brink. From the ashes, was born the egg-bearing phoenix: The National Egg Coordination Committee (NECC).

The NECC’s advertising campaign was done by Enterprise Advertising which focussed on several things.

First, a print campaign to establish the egg as a superfood. It also reached out to people with special nutritional needs like mothers and children so that they added eggs to their diet. Ads showcased how eggs could spice up any meal, from chaat to biryani.

Today, you can get eggs of almost all varieties and shapes and sizes. The egg story has reached its pinnacle and if your dietary beliefs permit, you should definitely consider adding this superfood to your diet.

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