Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

 

139 Comments

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Hristo says ...
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
05/12/2010 10:42:37 PM CDT
Joan says ...
After watching Food Inc. Grass feed beef is the only beef I'll eat. When it goes on sale like it did this past week at WF you have to act quickly because it sells out fast! I went back just 2 days later to buy more and their supply was almost gone. Shows you how popular it has become. BTW Willshire Organic Grass fed hot dogs...yummm!
05/12/2010 10:52:21 PM CDT
cynthia debenedetti says ...
Hello, I'm glad to hear this from WHS because 4 weeks ago when I asked the Redwood City, Ca butchers if they sold grass fed beef "never-ever" (which means never fed corn grain) they told me they didn't have ANY such thing....only beef from cattle who were grass fed and fed corn/grain the last 6 weeks of it's life. So I bought my beef from a local produce retailer who DID sell beef from cattle who were/are grass fed and NEVER fed corn in their lives. And they are not contained-they can roam the pasture land in northern california. I love your stores and am glad to hear this.
05/12/2010 11:25:23 PM CDT
Jan says ...
I thought I didn't like hamburgers until I made some with your grass-fed beef. Oh my! Delicious!
05/12/2010 11:35:13 PM CDT
Dave says ...
Melanie said: Can anyone tell me if the grass that is being fed to the cows is pesticide free. I would also like to know whether the grass they've been eating is organic. Do the cows eat it in a pasture, or do they sometimes eat pre-clipped grass somewhere else?
05/12/2010 11:56:25 PM CDT
vaughnm says ...
@Melanie & Dave In many cases, our grass-fed beef is organic. In order to be certified organic, the producer is prohibited from using any toxic and persistent pesticides. In general it’s not as common to use pesticides intensively on pastures as it is on crops, if it is used at all.
05/12/2010 11:57:56 PM CDT
vaughnm says ...
@Dave You also asked whether the animals eat clipped grass. The answer is that they might. Although grass farmers plant strategically to try to have viable forage available at all times of year, there are some times when that is not possible…as well, there could be weather anomalies that mess up their best-laid plans. For instance, there was a terrifically serious drought in Texas last spring, summer and fall. At times when the pastures are not providing all the nutrients the animals need, they might be given hay that was cut during the peak of the season or haylage, which is grass that is cut, partially dried and ensiled (a process of anaerobic fermentation to preserve the grasses) to exclude air, or plastic-wrapped in large bales So, yes…they might indeed eat grass that has been dried or otherwise preserved at a later, which are provided in racks on pasture.
05/12/2010 11:59:58 PM CDT
Helen says ...
I am also interested in where this grass fed beef is slaughtered and processed before being shipped to your stores. Food Inc, illustrated very clearly how few slaughterhouses there are now in the USA and that both organic, grass fed, and grain fed cattle can be slaughtered in the same facility, allowing for cross contamination.
05/13/2010 1:12:31 AM CDT
briggid larson says ...
yipee, I am not a big beef eater,but my family is I like knowing the cattle was humanely raised which is better for everyone,the cows and the environment too
05/13/2010 5:13:43 AM CDT
Peter Burton says ...
The composition of grass-fed beef is different from grain-fed, according to "Omnivore's Dilemma." Significant amounts of heart-healthy Omega 3s are found in grass-fed beef. In contrast, Omega 3s levels in grain-fed beef are de minimis. Another benefit is unhealthy Omega 6 fats are much lower in grass-fed beef than in grain-fed, where they are high. Also, cattle raised on grass naturally use their famous three-chambered digestive tract to breakdown foods and eliminate bacteria, toxins and viruses. Grain feed wreaks havoc with cattle digestive tracts, causing high levels of acid that leads to sickness, liver failure and enables illnesses, such as Mad Cow Disease and E Coli, to thrive.
05/13/2010 5:57:50 AM CDT
Doll Wheeler says ...
Soooooo Happy to hear the great news!!!!! Me and my Family to only buy Grass-Fed, Since watching the Documentary "Food.,Inc." And also want to buy free range chicken, You Have those? Thanks Doll
05/13/2010 6:11:08 AM CDT
vaughnm says ...
@Doll To make the claim of “free range” or “free roaming”, producers must demonstrate to the Agency (FSIS) that the poultry has been allowed access to the outside. That can mean a lot of different things, so we don’t use that specific terminology in our stores, although some of our producers have applied for that label claim and use it on their packaging. To cut through the confusion, Whole Foods Market has chosen the Global Animal Partnership 5 Step Animal Welfare Rating as the animal welfare certification our producers will meet in order to sell meat to our company. Global Animal Partnership standards for broiler chickens requires that ALL birds have access to the outdoors to merit a Step 3 certification. Each Step has characteristics that distinguish the way the animals were raised. With that labeling system, we will be providing a completely transparent program that will allow you to know EXACTLY how the animals were raised for the meat you are purchasing. Because the auditing process takes time to complete, because all the producers in a group must be audited before a Step rating is assigned, it will take time for this program to be fully rolled out in all our regions. But our goal is to have all beef, pork and chicken Step rated by January, 2011, so keep your eye on the cases. The step rated meat will begin to show up this summer or fall.
05/13/2010 6:15:32 AM CDT
Nathania says ...
I've been going to my local farmers market for grass-fed beef but I'm really excited that I can get it at Whole Foods along with my other groceries! Thanks Whole Foods for helping to make grass-fed beef more mainstream. Hopefully more shops will catch on.
05/13/2010 8:48:26 AM CDT
Linda Vaccaro says ...
5/13/10 1. I would like to know if Colorado stores are buying from grass fed Colorado ranches? If so, is the processing plant in Co. or are we trucking this beef to and from other states, perhaps across the country? 2. I would like to know if the meat is processed separately from corn fed beef? i.e. Do they have a separate processing plant for grass fed beef or are they grinding up grass fed meat with the same machine that processes corn fed beef? 3. The cpws are primarily fed by grass but is there any other feed that they are supplemented with? The questions are very important to me and would, very much, appreciate accurate answers. I'm happy for us regarding the grass fed cows but really happy for the cows. Thank you. Linda Vaccaro
05/13/2010 9:09:50 AM CDT
vaughnm says ...
@Helen & Linda For a plant to be certified organic, the organic animals must go through the system first each day, or the entire system must be cleaned and sanitized if non-organic animals are processed first. Many of our grass-fed producers are also certified organic, so their animals are required to be separated. It’s part of their organic certification. In general, animals are slaughtered in groups from the same source…so the animals that were delivered on a truck are kept together. Most grass-fed beef is produced by small groups of ranchers, or by independent ranchers and slaughtered at smaller local plants. That being said, plants are not designated specifically for grass-fed. They follow strict processing facility and cross-contamination guidelines, but do process more than just grass-fed.
05/13/2010 9:15:19 AM CDT
vaughnm says ...
@Linda Regarding the CO stores, currently they buy from both CO ranches and CA ranches. However, starting at the end of July, all of the grass-fed will be raised on CO ranches and processed at CO facilities. Also, Whole Foods Market works with grass-fed producers who raise their animals entirely on grass, legumes and herbaceous plants. They may receive nutritional supplements, but not other forms of feed. See the response to Melanie and Dave about the forms of preserved grass that animals may be fed.
05/13/2010 9:17:00 AM CDT
catherine says ...
I LOVE Whole Foods. I am so very very grateful that such a market exist FINALLY locally on the east coast. It was very frustrating to try to eat healthy from the local grocery store which offer very limited organic and natural foods. WE (our bodies and brains!) ARE WORTH the money we spend on healthy food! I TOTALLY want to support any farmer who goes this route. How can you go to Dunkin Donuts everyone morning and then say, "i can't afford" organic food??? Bull crap! THANK YOU WHOLE FOODS FOR YOUR COMMITMENT to the health and welfare of the people, farmers and planet!
05/13/2010 9:19:28 AM CDT
Natalie says ...
I am so happy Whole Foods finally has grass fed beef. I would also like to see pastured chickens available.
05/13/2010 9:54:43 AM CDT
Maria says ...
Great news for Whole Foods and the country in general. Lets hope people are starting to become more aware of what they are putting in their mouths and how it affects them and our environment! Grass fed beef is a great start!
05/13/2010 9:59:42 AM CDT
Susan Johnson says ...
There is nothing like grass fed beef. Unfortunately, getting it where I live is nearly impossible. When will Whole Foods put a store in the Albany New York area??? whoe Fooids is awsome. Whenever I visit my daughter in Portland Maine, I take a cooler chest, and fill it up with meat and fish. What I wouldn't give for one closer to me that isn't in large city like New York and Hartford. The closest to me is over 3 hours away. Please put one closer.
05/13/2010 10:08:46 AM CDT
Juliette Aiyana says ...
Thumbs Up Whole Foods!! Not only is grass fed beef healthier for humans and the cows, but it is more humane for the cows. Not to mention the massive support this will give provide honest, hardworking farmers.
05/13/2010 10:15:28 AM CDT
Mike THoma says ...
Kudos on the grass-fed beef. I hope you move to adding pastured eggs and chickens, and pork and lamb on a store by store basis. By dealing direct with the farmers I'm hoping that the price of "the good stuff" gets better for the consumer and provides a lifeline for the family farmer who's doing it RIGHT to have a steady source of income.
05/13/2010 10:26:45 AM CDT
Kevin says ...
One comment about the higher prices on grass-fed beef. I did experience a bit of sticker shock when I first made the switch. Due to financial restraints it forced me to alter my diet, using beef as more of an addition to a meal rather than the center of the meal. I find myself savoring every bit of the beef, thankful for the cow and mindful of how it lived.
05/13/2010 10:31:06 AM CDT
Traci says ...
This is Great - thank you Whole Foods for the info and for selling grass fed cattle. Your store is an inspiration to my family's nutrition and way of life. And to the environment. I try to tell people how important it is to educate themselves on the food that they eat.
05/13/2010 10:53:03 AM CDT
Angela P says ...
I haven't eaten any beef in over 12 years. I would like to have some beef stew every now and then or a little beef here and there. I can trust grass fed cattle as beef to eat when I want. Thanks Whole Foods! I also thinks its awesome that Whole Foods has created a program to make loans to Farmers who support organic food. I really appreicate Whole Foods standing firm to quality whole foods we can trust!
05/13/2010 2:15:33 PM CDT

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