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USDA Receives Strong Message from the TLC


Washington, DC – The Truthful Labeling Coalition sent a strong message to the Department of Agriculture Monday by presenting a petition to stop the mislabeling of “all natural” chicken.

The petition, submitted to Dr. Richard Raymond, Under Secretary for Food Safety at the USDA, focuses on the inappropriate use of “all natural” labeling claims on so-called “enhanced” fresh chicken products. The TLC is calling for the USDA to take immediate action by ruling that pumped-up chicken cannot be labeled as “all natural” and that the ingredients in the “enhancing” solution be clearly visible and readable.

Supporting documents have been attached to the petition strengthening the TLC’s argument that consumers are unaware that the chicken they purchase at their local markets may be pumped-up with up to a 15 percent saltwater solution. In recent survey’s, half of all consumers said that they did not realize the chicken they bought was “enhanced.” Over 90 percent of consumers agreed that fresh chicken that says it is “natural” should not contain any type of added ingredients.

While focusing on changing the USDA’s labeling requirements, the petition also addresses the health risks associated with “enhanced” chicken – including the fact that some “enhanced” chicken contains more than 822 percent more sodium than truly natural fresh chicken. Directly out of the package, a serving of “enhanced” chicken can contain over 25 percent of the recommended daily allowance of sodium for a healthy adult. Because more than half of all people surveyed simply did not realize the added sodium in the chicken, it is reasonable to assume that a significant percentage of these consumers seasoned the chicken with additional salt while cooking and prior to consumption.

The TLC is looking forward to discussing the petition with the USDA, and changing the “all natural” labeling requirements with the intention that consumers know exactly what they are getting when they purchase fresh 100 percent all natural chicken products.

The TLC Tip Sheet is designed to inform, educate, and inspire people to get involved with the truthful labeling cause.

Regular updates will be forthcoming. The petition, interviews, photographs and B-Roll are available by contacting Hilary Koehl at or at 202.448.0196.

To join the coalition visit


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