Dynamics of bacterial and fungal communities associated with eggshells during incubation
Ergosterol (ERG) content, being an indicator of fungal biomass, was analyzed in samples of eggshell, egg white, and egg yolk from eggs from farms with intensive management systems of layer hens (i.e., cage and litter housing). Moreover, analogous samples were analyzed from eggs from farms in the western central part of Poland, where layer hens were kept in the organic system. In all samples, the highest ERG concentration was found in shells and the lowest in egg white, whereas ERG was not found in egg yolk. When comparing investigated housing systems, a higher concentration of the analyzed metabolite was detected in eggs from litter housing than in eggs from cage housing. Concentrations of ERG in samples of eggs from organic husbandry were highly varied, ranging from 2.44 to 42.67 mg/kg in shells and from 0.28 to 16.11 mg/kg in egg white.