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Are eggs expensive in Korea?


Eggs are a staple food for many people around the world, and their price can vary depending on the region. In this article, we will explore whether eggs are expensive in Korea.

Egg Production in Korea

South Korea is the world’s twelfth-largest egg producer, with a production of 10 billion eggs annually. The country has over 1,500 egg farms, mainly located in the southeastern regions.

Factors Affecting Egg Prices

Several factors can affect egg prices in Korea, including production costs, supply and demand, and imports. The price of chicken feed, which constitutes 70% of production costs, is a significant factor.

Egg Prices in Korea Compared to Other Countries

According to data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Korea’s average egg price was USD 0.18 per egg in 2019, which is lower than Japan’s USD 0.24 per egg but higher than China’s USD 0.12 per egg.

Retail Egg Prices in Korea

The retail prices of eggs in Korea vary depending on the region and season. According to statistics from the Korean Statistical Information Service, the average retail price of eggs in October 2021 was KRW 2,838 (USD 2.40) per ten eggs.

Egg Supply and Demand in Korea

Korea’s egg production has been increasing over the past decade, but demand has also been growing due to changes in dietary habits and an aging population. The Covid-19 pandemic also affected supply and demand dynamics.

Egg Imports in Korea

Korea imports eggs from other countries to supplement domestic production. The main sources of imported eggs are the United States, Australia, and New Zealand. However, the government imposes tariffs on imported eggs to protect the domestic market.

Alternative Protein Sources in Korea

As concerns over animal welfare and sustainability grow, some consumers in Korea are turning to alternative protein sources such as tofu and plant-based eggs. These products are generally more expensive than traditional eggs.

Egg Consumption in Korea

Koreans consume eggs in various forms, including boiled, fried, and as an ingredient in dishes such as bibimbap and kimbap. According to a survey by the Korea Rural Economic Institute, Koreans consumed an average of 248 eggs per person in 2020.

Health Benefits of Eggs

Eggs are a good source of protein and contain essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin B12, vitamin D, and choline. However, excessive egg consumption may increase the risk of heart disease in some people.


In conclusion, eggs are not particularly expensive in Korea compared to other countries. The price of eggs can fluctuate depending on supply and demand dynamics and production costs. As egg alternatives become more popular, it will be interesting to see how this affects the egg market in Korea.

Are groceries expensive in Korea?

The cost of groceries in the country is quite affordable, but expats may be taken aback by the cost of a bottle of wine, which is one of the pricier items.

Is the food in Korea cheap?

Korean food is generally affordable, and if you want to save even more money, buying the necessary ingredients from a grocery store and cooking the meal at home is an even more economical option.

Which meat is expensive in Korea?

Hanwoo beef comes from a breed of cattle that is native to Korea called Hanwoo. These cattle are small and primarily used for their meat, which is known to be one of the most rare and expensive meats globally.

How to eat on a budget in Korea?

Typically, dining at local Korean eateries is less expensive than dining at Western restaurants. For budget-friendly options, consider trying street food. A popular dish is Korean rice rolls that are stuffed with various meats and vegetables, and Kimbap is widely available and affordable.

Why do Koreans eat eggs for every meal?

Koreans consider eggs to be a healthy food and often consume them as hard-boiled eggs for breakfast, in packed lunches, or as a convenient snack. Historically, eggs were scarce and mainly reserved for children and the head of the household among regular peasants.

What kind of eggs do Koreans eat?

Mayak Eggs, or Mayak Gyeran, are a popular egg dish in Korea! The literal translation refers to how addicting these eggs and can be. The flavor is phenomenal and these eggs are great for breakfast, or as a traditional Korean side dish (banchan).Jan 27, 2023

The Future of Egg Production in Korea

The Korean government has been implementing policies to improve the efficiency and sustainability of egg production. The government has also pushed for more eco-friendly egg production methods, such as free-range systems, to meet consumer demand for more ethical and sustainable food choices.

The Impact of Avian Influenza on Egg Prices

Avian influenza, also known as bird flu, is a highly contagious viral disease that affects poultry. Outbreaks of avian influenza have occurred in Korea in the past, leading to a shortage of eggs and a spike in egg prices. In 2021, the government culled millions of chickens to contain an outbreak of the H5N8 strain of avian influenza, leading to an increase in egg prices.

The Role of Eggs in Korean Cuisine

Eggs play a significant role in Korean cuisine and are used in many traditional dishes. For example, gyeran jjim is a steamed egg dish often served as a side dish with rice or as a filling for kimbap. Tamagoyaki, a type of Japanese omelet, is also popular with Koreans and can be found in many Korean sushi restaurants.

The Benefits and Challenges of Alternative Protein Sources

While alternative protein sources offer more ethical and sustainable food choices, they can be more expensive than traditional eggs. Additionally, some consumers may be hesitant to try these products due to unfamiliarity or taste preferences. However, as technology advances and production costs decrease, alternative protein sources may become more accessible and widely adopted in Korea.

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