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Hy-Vee Offers New Line Of All-Natural Chicken

October 10, 2008 | News & Press Releases


WEST DES MOINES, IA – Consumers today are looking for more clarity about the food they buy in regard not only to taste and origin but also to packaging and handling procedures. They can have that information at hand with Just BARE™, a new line of all-natural chicken just introduced at Hy-Vee stores across the Midwest.

The brand aligns with the company’s efforts to increase its locally grown product offerings and to help customers focused on making nutritious and healthy food choices for their families. Just BARE packaging shuns the traditional foam tray and plastic over-wrap in favor of a transparent, recyclable plastic tray with clear film lid. Customers have a nearly 360-degree view of the chicken they are purchasing, providing another point of difference.

“Today more than ever, our customers are mindful of what they eat,” said Kenan Judge, assistant vice president, meat operations at Hy-Vee. “They are equally concerned about where that food comes from and are very aware of their ecological footprint. The Just BARE brand addresses shopper concerns on all those fronts.”

The chickens sold under the Just BARE brand are vegetable-fed with no added hormones or antibiotics and raised cage-free by independent family farmers in the upper Midwest. Flocks roam free in climate-controlled barns, eat and drink at will and interact as they would in the outdoors, protected from environmental hazards.

“All of our chickens are well cared for by family farmers throughout Minnesota who are passionate about what they do,” said Julie Berling, director of brand strategy and advocacy for Just BARE.

Just BARE follows the Animal Welfare Guidelines established by the National Chicken Council (NCC) in conjunction with the nation’s industry experts and top academic poultry scientists. An ongoing audit helps ensure the proper care, management and handling of its chickens.

Shoppers can learn the location of the farm where their chicken came from by checking the Family Farm Code located next to the freshness date on each package and entering the 3-digit code online at The site also elaborates on the brand’s commitment to caring for its animals and communities.

Just BARE includes five product offerings: boneless and skinless chicken breasts, thighs and tenders, whole chicken and chicken drumsticks. Stores with full-service meat counters offer some Just BARE items as well.

“The partnership between Just BARE and Hy-Vee is an example of how two companies with strong Midwest roots and values can come together to create something good and bring unexpected value to consumers,” said Tim Wensman, executive vice president of sales, marketing & logistics for Just BARE.

Hy-Vee, Inc. is an employee-owned corporation operating 224 retail stores in seven Midwestern states. For 2007 the company recorded total sales of $5.6 billion, ranking it among the top 30 supermarket chains and the top 50 private companies in the United States.

Just BARE™ is a registered trademark of and distributed by Gold’n Plump Poultry. Based in St. Cloud, Minn., Gold’n Plump Poultry is a family-owned provider of premium chicken products to retail, deli and foodservice customers throughout the Midwest and in other parts of the country. The company employs about 1,500 people and partners with about 300 family farmers in Minnesota and Wisconsin to produce wholesome, high-quality chicken. For more information on the Just BARE™ line of poultry products and tips on minimalist cooking and thinking, visit