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How Do You Make Meat GMO Free When Most U.S. Feed Isn’t?

Applegate wants to get a step closer to nature—only nature isn’t easy to find.
Photographer: Robyn Beck/AFP via Getty Images

Chicken lovers who demand more than the natural, organic, or free-range labels slapped on pretty much everything these days may be happily surprised to find a new product in the supermarket freezer: Applegate Farms has started shipping Non-GMO Project Verified organic chicken nuggets to retailers nationwide.

Sure, we’re talking nuggets here. But pledging to consumers that these U.S. chickens never ate a kernel of corn manipulated by transgenic science signals a significant escalation for Applegate. Just last year, this preeminent purveyor of natural and organic meats promised to eliminate all genetically modified ingredients from production. Now its organic nuggets are the first Applegate item to get the new Non-GMO seal—and they won't be the last. The company is announcing on Wednesday its commitment to guarantee that every one of its products—both organic and natural—is non-GMO, all the way up the supply chain to the animals’ feed.