True Foods™ provides assurance to discerning consumers that food products bearing this trustmark are verified and continually monitored from farm to shelf to ensure that they consistently conform to the label claims on the package.
Americans enjoy some of the safest and most nutritious food available in the world. Today, many Americans want assurances that their meat, milk and egg products are produced the way that the statements included on the food labels outline and these products are consistently true and verified.
Working directly with Farmers, Food companies, and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), True Foods™ brings the truth and transparency to Americans who want to know where their food comes from, how it was raised and what it was fed.
Many Americans are already enjoying food products that claim to be enriched with various vitamins, probiotics, minerals, Omega 3 or claim to be raised without the use of hormones, antibiotics, animal by-products or vegetable grain fed.
Nutrient enrichment levels are tested in food labs to confirm the label claims while “raised without” claims must be approved through animal feeding protocols and verified through regular auditing processes that flow from farm to fork.
True Foods™ creates and manages these complex claim verification systems while providing transparent access to the stories behind the products that bear the True Foods™ Trustmark.
FOOD YOU CAN TRUST
Below are the verifiable label claims found on various food products in America. These claims can sometimes be confusing, which is why we’ve outlined each of them so that you can better understand what they all really mean. Click on a claim below to see its description.
Raised Without Antibiotics (RWA)
Raised Without the Use of Added Hormones
(No Hormones Administered or No Steroids Administered) Hormones are only approved for use in beef cattle and sheep raising. They are not approved for use in poultry, swine, veal calves, or exotic, non-amenable species (e.g., bison and goats). Therefore, FSIS will not approve the phrase “no hormones administered” on poultry, pork veal or exotic, non-amenable meat products labels, unless it is immediately (directly) followed with the statement: “Federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones in poultry (or pork, veal or exotic, non-amenable meat products).
No Animal By-Product (NAB)
To display this claim, meat, poultry, and fish products must be raised on feed free of ingredients or components of animal origin, including animal products and animal by-products.
It should be noted that it is understood that the animals subject to the feed claims, except for chicken and fish, were nourished with their mother’s milk. This milk is not taken into consideration when evaluating a claim for the absence of animal products and animal by-products in the animal’s diet. Animal Products are defined to include cream, eggs, milk, non-fertilized ova and semen. Animal By-Products are defined to include blood or any of its components, bones, bristles, feathers, flesh, hair, hides, hoofs, offal, skins and wool, and anything containing any of those things.
Raised Without Growth Promotants (Stimulants)
To display this claim, the animal or fish must not have any hormone implants (only applies to beef) nor receive any beta agonists from birth to harvest. Beta-agonists* can be administered through swine, beef cattle and turkey feeds by way of Ractopamine® based products under the trade names Paylean®, Optiflexx®, Engain® and Actogain®.
*Beta-agonists are a class of non-hormonal compounds fed to cattle, their mode of action is to bind to receptors on fat cells in the animals’ body and redirect and reduce the metabolism of fat. Consequently, less fat is produced and less fat is stored in the carcass. At the same time, the compounds bind to receptors on muscle cells and redirect and increase the size of muscle fibers. Muscle fiber size replaces some of the weight normally found from fat and the total carcass contains a higher percentage lean muscle. These actions reduce the energy supplied by the feed to produce weight gain. With more weight produced by the same level of feed intake feed efficiency is increased.
(Source: Penn State Extension)
Required no use of any animal by products including, but not limited to: animal fats and shortenings, blood meal, feather meal, poultry by products, meat and bone meat, bakery meal, and in certain cases dried distillers grains.
No Antibiotics Important to Human Medicine (NAIHM)
Free Range or Free Roaming (Poultry)
Living / Raising / Raising Conditions
Excellent Source of Selenium
Animal Welfare and Environmental Stewardship
These claims describe how animals are raised based on the care they receive by the producer or how the producer maintains the land and replenishes the environment. FSIS has not defined these claims in regulations or policy guidelines. For animal welfare claims, such as “Raised with Care” or “Humanely Raised,” FSIS will only approve a claim of a statement is provided on the label showing ownership and including an explanation of the meaning of the claim for consumers. Examples of this type of claim: Humanely Raised*, Sustainably Farmed*, and Raised with Environmental Stewardship*. (*Note: These claims require additional terminology to define their meaning on the label. The definitions must appear with the claim or be connected by a symbol on the panel in which the claim was first made.)
These claims require that the animals only eat the diet claimed for the lifetime of the animal, with the exception of milk consumed prior to weaning. “Grass Fed” or “100% Grass Fed” claims may only be applied to meat and meat product labels derived from cattle that were only (100%) fed grass (forage) after being weaned from their monther’s milk. The diet must be derived solely from forage, and animals cannot be fed grain or grain by-products and must have continuous access to pasture during the growing season until slaughter. Forage consists of grass (annual and perennial), forbs (e.g., legumes, brassica), browse, or cereal grain crops in the vegetative (pre-grain) state. Hay, haylage, baleage, silage, crop residue without grain, and other roughage sources may also be included as acceptable feed sources. Routine mineral and vitamin supplementation may also be included in feeding regimen.
Recent legislation was enacted requiring the secretary of agriculture to develop and implement a mandatory national bioengineered food disclosure standard withing two years. In the wake of such legislation, FSIS is allowing the use of the terms “genetically modified organism” or “GMO” in negative claims provided that the label or labeling is otherwise truthful and not misleading.
FSIS has developed a compliance guide for companies that seek to make label or labeling claims concerning the fact that bioengineered or GM ingredients were not used in a meat, poultry or egg product.
Consistent with past practice, FSIS will continue to allow the use of synonymous terms such as “genetically engineered.” If FSIS has approved an organic claim on the product label, establishments may add an applicable negative claim of the kind discussed in the guidance.
Because FSIS cannot independently verify negative claims for ingredients or feed, the agency has required establishments that make these claims to comply with standards established by a third-party certifying organization. FSIS currently requires that the third-party certifying organization’s standards be publically available on a website and the label or labeling disclose the website address of the third-party certifying organization.
Examples of such claims for the meat or poultry component that was raised on feed containing non-genetically modified ingredients that FSIS will accept here are: “Pasture raised beef fed a vegetarian diet with non bioengineered ingredients,” “Chicken raised on a diet containing no genetically engineered ingredients”, or “Derived from beef fed no GMO feed.” FSIS will utilize the definition of “bioengineering” to refer to a food that contains genetic material that has been modified through in vitro recombinant deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) techniques and for what that modification could not otherwise be obtained through conventional breeding or found in nature.
One common 3rd party verificaion is the Non-GMO Project seal (“the butterfly seal”) which was first apprived by FSIS in 2013, and that approval remains in effect.
Contains XXMG Docosohexanoic Acid (DHA) Per Serving
Contains XXMG Omega 3 Fatty Acid Per Serving
A product containing no artificial ingredient or added color and is only minimally processed. Minimal processing means that the product was processed in a manner that does not fundamentally alter the product. The label must include a statement explaining the meaning of the term natural (such as “no artificial ingredients; minimally processed”).
Halal and Zabiah Halal
Source / Traceability
This type of claim demonstrates how the animal can be traced back to its farm of origin from birth to slaughter/harvest. Examples of this type of claim: Source Verified and Traceable to [Name of Farm of Orgin].
Third Party Certification
Farmers You Can Trust
Meet some of the farmers who are part of True Foods™.