BRIDGEWATER, NJ – Applegate announced plans to remove genetically modified organisms from its entire supply chain.
“It’s very significant that today Applegate is promising to go even further on our quest for transparency and traceability in removing GMOs from our entire supply chain, including the most problematic part – animal feed,” Steve Lykken, Applegate president, said in a statement. “Exactly a year ago today, Applegate became a stand-alone subsidiary of Hormel Foods with the promise that we would continue to lead in changing the meat we eat, and that’s exactly what we’re doing.”
The company described the transition as “a monumental undertaking” because the majority of crops used in animal feed are GMO crops. Approximately 90 percent of planted acreage for corn and 94 percent of planted acreage for soybeans are GMOs, according to data from the Economic Research Service of the US Dept. of Agriculture.
Applegate’s announcement comes as the company unveils its first-ever Non-GMO Project Verified Applegate Organics Chicken Nuggets and Applegate Organics Gluten-free Chicken Nuggets. Both products are made in compliance with Non-GMO Project standards, which means ongoing testing of all major GMO risk ingredients, facility inspections and annual audits, the company explained.
"The Applegate brand was built on a foundation of trust with consumers,” Lykken said. “By pursuing third-party certification on GMO avoidance for all of our products, we’re adding another layer of credibility and providing consumers the information they need to confidently make the best choices for themselves and their families.”