Talking Turkey: Find a Natural, Healthy Turkey for Thanksgiving

Understanding labels can help you find the best turkey quickly.

| November/December 2004

Reading turkey labels at the grocery store can gobble up much of your valuable holiday planning time. Here’s a rundown of how to make quick sense of all the terms. (Note: All turkey, fresh or frozen, is inspected by the USDA.)


Definition: No additives, preservatives, or chemicals were added after the bird was processed (official USDA definition).

Grocery notes: Grocery stores have varying definitions. At natural foods stores, “natural” typically means turkeys were raised without antibiotics or pesticides and allowed access to the outdoors. Check with your retailer for details.


Definition: Turkeys were not subjected to antibiotics, pesticides, or given animal byproducts in their feed. They were able to roam outdoors.

Sandra Dattoli
11/9/2013 5:14:51 PM

I order my turkey directly from an Amish store in a local Amish community. It is to die for--fresh and free range.

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