Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

 

195 Comments

Comments

n knapp jebens says ...
Step 5 please!
02/21/2011 1:46:46 PM CST
Teddy says ...
How about recognizing chicken alternatives that do not prioritize consumer "need" over chickens' ultimate welfare?
02/21/2011 1:49:32 PM CST
Heather says ...
Maybe I am not looking closely enough, but I can't seem to locate the steps on all of the meat/chicken packages. Also I haven't seen anything above a 2. Am I looking in the wrong place or something?
02/21/2011 2:06:15 PM CST
Bruce McCarthy says ...
This is wonderful information to have on the food we buy. I have come to trust Bell & Evans, for example, but found it hard to articulate what they do and don't do with their chickens. (Actually, I was kind of hoping to find they allowed them outdoors, as in step 3.) And, frankly, even at Whole Foods it's hard to know what you are buying exactly. This info really helps make it clear and makes it easier to make decisions when in the store. So thank you for posting it here and marking the chicken you sell in the stores. I will watch for it. I've tried to develop some of my own principles for healthy and responsible (as well as convenient and tasty) foods I eat on my blog. http://www.madeofgoodfood.com/principles/#responsible. Hopefully that's useful for folks.
02/21/2011 2:29:52 PM CST
Marilyn says ...
Fantastic! Couldn't have come as a better time. This is the way life is supposed to be for all creatures. I recently decided to stop eating animals and by-products, especially chickens because of the horrendous conditions under which factory farms raise them.
02/21/2011 4:01:11 PM CST
Trino says ...
Don't the chickens get eaten by predators? Maybe you should keep them in a building all the time, it would be safer in there
02/22/2011 10:29:35 AM CST
Christina says ...
I heading to Whole foods today and I'm looking forward to the new labeling. I really want to know that my food had a good life and didn't endure any suffering. I don't mind paying higher prices to put food in my body that is good for me and the planet. I think this rating system will help me to know what I'm paying for.
02/22/2011 10:50:33 AM CST
bepkom says ...
@Lo: The health of the animals is very important to us! While the standards were being developed by Global Animal Partnership, a number of different experts were brought together, including representatives from the veterinary community, to provide invaluable guidance and advice during the process.
02/22/2011 9:10:14 PM CST
bepkom says ...
@Dannielle: I'm going to look into your inquiries and will post the answer soon. Thanks!
03/28/2011 9:42:59 PM CDT
amy says ...
What happens to the male chick and ducks and turkeys?
04/04/2011 10:58:02 PM CDT
Laura Henderson says ...
Thank you SO much for investing in this program. Personally I am a vegan, but I applaud any effort to raise awareness of animal welfare issues -- and to allow people to avoid unintentionally supporting animal cruelty when they shop. I hope eventually you will only carry Step 4 and 5. I also understand you will be carrying Humane Choice pet food so people can feed their pets food that is humane as well. Thank you!
04/06/2011 9:52:59 AM CDT
Brian Quinn says ...
I think this an awesome idea and thank you for doing it! I will definitely pay the extra money to buy the top rating!
05/02/2011 8:29:55 PM CDT
Jan Warren says ...
Can you please tell me if any of these 1-5 star chicken producers feed their chickens Roxarsone, Pfizer's chicken feed (which contains inorganic arsenic) which is a known carcinogen. In response to an FDA inquiry, Pfizer said that they will voluntarily recall this chicken feed in "some markets."
06/09/2011 11:10:19 PM CDT
bepkom says ...
@Jan: No, our chickens are not fed Roxarsone. For more information on our strict Quality Standards, please click here: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/products/quality-standards.php
06/10/2011 12:16:31 PM CDT
CW says ...
This is such a great idea - we will definitely start buying all our meats at whole foods now. It makes being humane-conscious so simple!
07/24/2011 6:39:53 PM CDT
Patti J says ...
What step level of chicken are you going to use in your prepared meals such as the cooked chickens, etc. The employees at the prepared foods section knew nothing about where the meat in the dishes came from. There were roasted chickens that looked great. I asked, "Are these chickens step rated also?" The gentlemen said, "I'm not sure." Can we get more labeling in the prepared section please? I'm busy and would like to buy more ready made foods.
08/30/2011 5:12:13 PM CDT
Denise Coradini says ...
The program sounds great and is very informative. My only concern, as with all organic live stock, is that organic feed is not the same as an animals natural feed. The more corn, the more Omega 6 feed, the less healthy for us is their meat. I would like to see more about what animals are grazing naturally or what percentage of their diet is natural -- bugs, grass, etc. -- as opposed to corn or other man-made feed that might not make for the healthiest meat products. I would like to see more farmers/ranchers encouraged to offer naturally fed animals as they do in Brazil, New Zealand and other countries.
08/14/2011 8:50:21 AM CDT
Yvonne says ...
I have enjoyed using this rating system. I would like it if all the meat were labeled with this rating system at the whole foods I shop at. I'm not sure if some of the meat is not labeled because it has a rating less than step 1 or if the sticker was not put on. I am a bit confused by that. I also would like to see this rating system being applied to the eggs, dairy, and all the other animal products. This rating system really helps me make decisions about what I chose to buy and therefore I would like to see it used more. At the very least all the meat should be labeled, unless it not being labeled means that the meat has not reached the standards of step 1. Incidentally I also use the rating system for fish at the store, which again is instrumental in helping me make decisions about what I buy; however often when a fish is on sale, only the sale price is listed and not its rating. I hope that something can be done in the future to make the rating system more prevalent.
08/17/2011 9:43:12 AM CDT
Shirley Ann says ...
Hi, I got chicken today (Aug 31, 2011) at WF in Mill Valley. Label says the grower is Snelling Co. I don't see them listed above. What is their rating?
08/31/2011 3:48:24 PM CDT
Shirley Ann says ...
Another question: what are the Whole Foods standards re: debeaking of chickens?
08/31/2011 3:53:58 PM CDT
janejohnson says ...
@Shirley Ann The chicken from Snelling CA, sold at your Mill Valley Whole Foods Market has a Step 3 rating. To learn more about what the steps mean, regarding animal treatment and processing, please watch this video about our rating system. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pv4bzoEG8Kc
09/02/2011 3:28:29 PM CDT
janejohnson says ...
@S Larhette Hmm, the inconsistent quality could be due to a whole host of reasons. I reached out to one of our Global Meat Buyers and this was her answer: "We do encourage our chicken suppliers to use the similar breeds and feed formulations to ensure that the quality is consistent but if you want more info please contact Bell & Evans directly at: http://www.bellandevans.com/content/customer-service or via telephone: 717-865-6626"
01/25/2012 2:52:20 PM CST
Linda says ...
I was wondering if any of these standards address chlorine in the processing step of poultry, I know Bell & Evans do not use chlorine in processing or cleaning their poultry. Would anyone know if any of these other companies use chlorine in there chicken? Thanks
09/20/2011 1:26:38 PM CDT
janejohnson says ...
@Linda Thanks for your thoughtful question. Some producers use a water bath with an extremely diluted chlorine content for chilling chicken post slaughter. Others use an air chiller. The producers using air chillers are very interested in calling it out and do so quite openly on their packaging and in our stores. You should see an "air cooled" promotion on the package itself. So, if you don't see the call out to air chilled in the store or on the package, then it's probably not. As for finding air cooled '"step rated" chicken near you, I encourage you to reach out to your community's Whole Foods Market. A Team Member from your store will be happy to speak with you about the available options. Follow the link below to identify your store and their contact information. http://wholefoodsmarket.com/stores/
09/21/2011 2:59:54 PM CDT
Ed says ...
How can I buy Pasture Raised Organic Chicken from you stores? Or do you guys even carry any at all? and if so, how can I tell? Free range has lost all its meaning now, and pasture raised is what people in fact are looking for when they choose "free range".
01/31/2012 7:33:44 AM CST

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