The term “all-natural” is used loosely among consumers and manufacturers. Believe it or not, the meaning of the phrase is currently still poorly defined within the meat and produce industries. In fact, until recently, the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had not laid out a clear-cut definition of the words “all-natural” at all. So, while that definition is now in progress, we thought it would be helpful to our customers to explain just exactly what we at Midtown Market define as “all-natural” meats.
First of all, when we select natural meats for our meat shop or deli, we adhere to the USDA’s definition, which states that a product can be deemed natural when it contains “no artificial ingredient or added color and is only minimally processed.” Minimally processed means that when the item is produced, the nature of the item cannot be fundamentally altered from its original state.
The meat must also contain a label that includes a statement which explains the meaning of the term natural, such as “no artificial ingredients” or “minimally processed.” If meat is not clearly labeled as natural, then don’t assume that it is no matter where you shop.
At Midtown Market we go a step further and define our natural meat as that which contains no artificial flavors, colors or ingredients and no chemical preservatives have been added. We sell beef and chicken that has never been frozen. No growth enhancement hormones or antibiotics are ever used on meats labeled as natural in our store. In addition to this, our natural beef has also been grass fed throughout its entire life.
Midtown Market butcher Ricky Rowell is very selective in the quality of meats that he allows to be sold at Midtown Market. That has made him an expert in the natural meat department around here. If you have any questions regarding the all-natural labels we use, please consult one of our employees. We’re all happy to help!