By now you've noticed that the prices of eggs, a staple in many homes, have skyrocketed in the past several months.  In fact,  prices are so high that some have been arrested at the southern border for trying to smuggle eggs across the border.

According to KGTV in San Diego, border officials are seeing an increase in egg smuggling.  The law says bringing uncooked eggs from Mexico into the U.S. is illegal and can lead to a fine of up to $10,000.

EU Regulations Leave Organic Farmer Holding 70,000 Eggs
Getty Images


VOHBURG, GERMANY - MARCH 20: A hen swaggers over a crate of eggs in the farm hall of Walter Hoehne, egg producer and head of the organic farmer association CW Oeko Ei GmbH on March 20, 2008 in Vohburg, Germany. Due to a newly changed consumers protection law Hoehne is not allowed to sell a quantity of 70.000 hot boiled and painted eggs for the Easter holidays. The problem consists in the organic produced eggs on the one side and the colours, which are not declared as organic. So it's not possible to sell the treated eggs neither as organic nor as conventional product. It's an old German children's tradition to hide, seek and eat colourful painted eggs on Easter Sunday. (Photo by Johannes Simon/Getty Images)

So why are the prices skyrocketing?  Food distributors say it's because of the bird flu and supply chain issues.  Others think egg producers are just gouging the public.  Here's why some say it is gouging.   A farm agency group says the largest egg producer in the United States saw a 600% jump in profits in the last quarter.  The non profit group, Farm Action has sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission alleging that egg companies are price gouging and using other unfair or deceptive acts or practices. And the groups says the largest producer,  Cal-Maine foods has had no positive avian flu tests on any of its farms.

I did some research and at this time last year we were paying about $1.79 for a dozen large Grade A eggs.  Here are the prices today.

All these prices are Montana prices.  The national average for a dozen eggs is $4:25

Walmart: $5.37.

Target:  $ 5:19 (brown eggs)

Smith's:  $5:29

Albertsons:  $4.99

Super 1: $4.98 (large Double A)

When will prices drop?  Hard to say says a scientist at the Egg Industry Center  at Iowa State University.  They say prices will probably begin to drop when the avian flu dies down.

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