Two congressmen want USDA to reform its labeling requirements for "all natural" chicken products. Yes, so far, just chicken products.
Rep. Chip Pickering (R-Miss.) and Rep. Dennis Cardoza (D-Calif.), who also chairs House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Horticulture and Organic agriculture, want USDA to prohibit the "natural" label on any fresh chicken that has been pumped. They also want statements about "pumped solution" to be more prominently displayed on packages so that consumers can more readily identify the ingredients.
"Consumers are being cheated in their wallets and their health," Pickering said in a news conference. "They are buying chicken by weight that has been injected with 15 percent sodium water. They are buying chicken as a health-conscious decision, but getting 800 percent more sodium per serving than truly natural chicken."
Several poultry processors also recently announced a coalition aimed to get USDA to tighten the use of the word "natural" in poultry.