WICHITA, Kan. – Cargill's Shady Brook Farms brand of turkey now has the USDA Process Verified seal of approval but school districts won't see a premium price tag. Cargill’s two major turkey brands are the first to offer turkeys raised without antibiotics used for growth promotion.

Shady Brook Farms school-lunch products will replace its Harvest Provisions brand in the 2015-2016 school year, Cargill said. Harvest Provisions previously was marketed for school lunch programs.

The US Department of Agriculture's Process Verified Program requires third party audits of farm practices, including animal handling by trained personnel and detailed documentation for ongoing federal compliance. Cargill said the company will provide USDA Process Verified turkey for bulk commodity processing specifically for the National School Lunch Program.

“We know the USDA and school districts face ever-increasing budget challenges when they are trying to procure high-quality protein for lunch programs and we believe Shady Brook Farms will provide a turkey protein answer,” said Jan Hood, assistant vice president of marketing for Cargill’s turkey business. “Additionally, we know that parents place a high value on quality protein for their children. Consumer research we conducted last year tells us 62 percent prefer turkey raised without growth stimulants, including antibiotics used for that purpose. Our turkey produced as part of the USDA Process Verified Program should address those desires.”

USDA approved Cargill to use the Process Verified seal in mid-2014.