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Gluten Free Ground Turkey Without Natural Flavoring?
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I'm sensitive to a few things right now and I wanted to start eating ground turkey but found that companies like jennie-o have natural flavoring listed in the ingredients. Does anyone know of a place where i can order just the plain meat online? Like omaha steaks does for a few things? Or a grocery store company that's just...the meat? Thanks.

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Have you tried to contact Jennie o and see what the natural flavoring is? The butcher at my store said that the whole turkeys they have ( not Jennie O but it may be true for them, too). Are injected with water and salt. It's hard to find any without that extra salt which was my issue with them.

I know some on here grow their own chicken and turkeys. You might look for a local farm and get turkey from them. It won't be ground but you could grind it or just eat it. Local farmers markets might be good places to look. Even if they aren't selling meat, ask around. They may have some turkeys or know someone who does.

Adding: If you live near a city with Muslims, you might check with a Halal meat store. The one here is very friendly to non- Muslims. I know they have chicken but not sure about turkey.

Edited by kareng
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Only realized the natural flavoring since jennie-o closed on friday so I'm gonna call tomorrow :) Thanks for letting me know that I had no idea sometimes that that's all natural flavoring means..

 

Good suggestion on the Muslim meat store I never would have thought of that!

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Only realized the natural flavoring since jennie-o closed on friday so I'm gonna call tomorrow :) Thanks for letting me know that I had no idea sometimes that that's all natural flavoring means..

Good suggestion on the Muslim meat store I never would have thought of that!

Grill those Jennie O people! :0.

Seriously, post what they say. I would be curious. I have heard they sometimes add raw turkey juice or chicken for chicken. I don't quite understand where this " juice" comes from. Maybe when they grind it the juice comes out and they mix it back in?

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Quite possibly yeah. Probably ground the turkey but want it to keep more of it's flavor so they place it back in? We'll see what they say I'll give them a call.

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Called Jennie-O just now and she said that natural flavoring will always refer to a spice or seasoning. When i asked her about what was in the ground turkey she said rosemary :blink:  That's out for me at the moment. Maybe someday!

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rosemary is gluten-free.  i have eaten jennie-o products (usually ground turkey) with no adverse effects.  i'm arlene and i'm a celiac.  no problem with ground turkey or rosemary  :)   sorry it's off limits for you i guess you must have an allergy to rosemary i am assuming.  but rosemary is an herb and is gluten-free so safe to eat for celiac.com :)  turkey is a gluten-free food so gobble gobble :P

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I've been staying away from spices and working on my nutrition due to problems I've been having. Spices might give me trouble with the issues I've been having. So it's out for me for now unfortunately. I really wanted ground turkey but it looks like it's hard to find..shadybrook farms ground turkey has rosemary as well. I just want some ground turkey darn it!!!! lol

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Hmm even costco told me the ground turkey has rosemary. I guess I'm sticking to the turkey tenders i found at weis as it only has salt and water solution injected and is completely gluten free. No ground turkey for me =\

 

kareng you sad your issue was the salt injections? Was this just you needing to control sodium intake or was there another problem? I'm hoping I can eat these :) lol

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Hmm even costco told me the ground turkey has rosemary. I guess I'm sticking to the turkey tenders i found at weis as it only has salt and water solution injected and is completely gluten free. No ground turkey for me =\

 

kareng you sad your issue was the salt injections? Was this just you needing to control sodium intake or was there another problem? I'm hoping I can eat these :) lol

My mom had CHF ( congestive heart failure, etc) and retained fluid easily. I needed low sodium for food I fixed for her. That's how I noticed that some chicken says about 40 mg sodium per serving ( the naturally occurring amount) and others said 110 for the same serving size.

I wonder if you couldn't find a local farmer who sells meat. Or a smokehouse. We have a smokehouse that will sell you the turkey without the salt, etc before smoking if you ask. Smaller businesses are like that. They might even grind it for you but I know you don't live near here.

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Good thought. I'll have to look into some of this. Thanks!

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If you have a food processor you can buy turkey pieces and grind yourself as well.

ETA: oops! Karen beat me to this in her response. I have never seen anything added to raw turkey meat in Canada. It is very easy to find it "naked" in our grocery stores, thankfully.

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haha thanks. The food processor thing would definitely be an option. As for things being added....I just moved to the states in 2009 from canada myself. Your ground turkey doesn't say natural flavoring or anything? That's all that was on any of this...and apparently even with costco when i called ...even though the website doesn't even label natural flavoring in it..or in the picture....it has rosemary. Ugh. If I go home for a visit I'll be double checking to be sure lol Unless of course my issues are cleared up by then and it doesn't matter anymore haha

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Sheltons (Usually in natural foods) has ground turkey.  I just checked my label and did not find anything but turkey with retained water.

 

I got mine from Azure Standard.  I am in a natural food buyers club.  I am not sure how far east they go.  You can visit their website at azurestandard.com

 

D

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Oh my gosh thank you for that suggestion. I have to give them a call. Looking at their website it looks like you can get it delivered!

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Never mind..you can't...I tried finding anything at a local store and can't find anything. Still have to give them a call. Seems they only sell on the west coast?

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Oh my gosh thank you for that suggestion. I have to give them a call. Looking at their website it looks like you can get it delivered!

It ain't cheap but looky here:

http://www.amazon.com/Sheltons-Poultry-Range-Ground-Turkey/dp/B00CHTWA0A/ref=sr_1_23?s=grocery&ie=UTF8&qid=1377741541&sr=1-23&keywords=Shelton%27s

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I was at the store today and remembered having noticed this thread. I saw a huge turkey roll of ground turkey and checked it. No natural flavors added that I could find, the brand was Carolina Turkey.

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I was at the store today and remembered having noticed this thread. I saw a huge turkey roll of ground turkey and checked it. No natural flavors added that I could find, the brand was Carolina Turkey.

Thanks Adalaide I will check next time we're at the grocery store and see if they have that brand. I don't think they do though.

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I contacted Hormel, the manufacturer for "Jennie-O Ground Turkey".  I exchanged 5 emails with a "Consumer Response Specialist" who would not give me a straight answers to my questions about the "Natural Flavorings" listed on the packaging, and eventually refused to answer my questions.  
 
The problem is "Natural" has no legal meaning or weight, anyone can call anything "Natural", which is a minefield for people like me with medical food/chemical allergies.  I HAVE to ask, to be safe.  To date, in 5 years, Hormel is the first and only company ever to refuse the information I ask for.
 
Below are my emailed questions, and the responses verbatim:
 
1)  I asked "what specifically are in the "Natural Flavorings, and does it contain MSG"?  Response: "the natural flavoring is rosemary".  
 
2)  I then asked "it is just Rosemary oil, or dried herbs... are there other ingredients, and does it contain MSG? I have to ask due to medical food allergies"  The 4 word response: "It is rosemary extract".
 
3)  I asked "what else is in the rosemary extract" and "does it contain MSG?" and "I will never buy a product from a company that will not honestly disclose all ingredients."  The response: "I contacted our R & D department regarding the rosemary extract.  There is no Monosodium Glutamate in the extract."
 
4)  I replied: "Thank you for contacting your R&D department.  I will try one more time to ask my question... I will try caps… WHAT IS IN THE ROSEMARY EXTRACT? Specifically what ingredients?  Just Rosemary, or what else?  Thank you."
 
5)  The response: "I understand your question, NO CAPS NEEDED.  I'm sorry, I have provided you the information that I am able to. Jacki, Consumer Response Specialist, Hormel"
 
So I can confirm that Hormel refuses to disclose all the ingredients in their "Natural Flavorings", which is something I've read on many other message boards, but wanted to find out for myself by giving Hormel the opportunity to be honest about their ingredients.  They were not.  
 
Here is the problem -- "Rosemary Extract" sounds all nice and natural, but probably isn't.  What's in the oil?  What preservatives are included?  What other ingredients, then Rosemary are in this "extract"?
 
In the end -- I DID take a chance, and try "Jennie-O 99/1 Ground Turkey".  I got a migraine, tight chest, rash, and all my sinuses swelled shut so I couldn't breathe.  So there is definitely SOMETHING in there other than what Hormal refers to as "Natural".
 
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I contacted Hormel, the manufacturer for "Jennie-O Ground Turkey".  I exchanged 5 emails with a "Consumer Response Specialist" who would not give me a straight answers to my questions about the "Natural Flavorings" listed on the packaging, and eventually refused to answer my questions.  
 
The problem is "Natural" has no legal meaning or weight, anyone can call anything "Natural", which is a minefield for people like me with medical food/chemical allergies.  I HAVE to ask, to be safe.  To date, in 5 years, Hormel is the first and only company ever to refuse the information I ask for.
 
Below are my emailed questions, and the responses verbatim:
 
1)  I asked "what specifically are in the "Natural Flavorings, and does it contain MSG"?  Response: "the natural flavoring is rosemary".  
 
2)  I then asked "it is just Rosemary oil, or dried herbs... are there other ingredients, and does it contain MSG? I have to ask due to medical food allergies"  The 4 word response: "It is rosemary extract".
 
3)  I asked "what else is in the rosemary extract" and "does it contain MSG?" and "I will never buy a product from a company that will not honestly disclose all ingredients."  The response: "I contacted our R & D department regarding the rosemary extract.  There is no Monosodium Glutamate in the extract."
 
4)  I replied: "Thank you for contacting your R&D department.  I will try one more time to ask my question... I will try caps… WHAT IS IN THE ROSEMARY EXTRACT? Specifically what ingredients?  Just Rosemary, or what else?  Thank you."
 
5)  The response: "I understand your question, NO CAPS NEEDED.  I'm sorry, I have provided you the information that I am able to. Jacki, Consumer Response Specialist, Hormel"
 
So I can confirm that Hormel refuses to disclose all the ingredients in their "Natural Flavorings", which is something I've read on many other message boards, but wanted to find out for myself by giving Hormel the opportunity to be honest about their ingredients.  They were not.  
 
Here is the problem -- "Rosemary Extract" sounds all nice and natural, but probably isn't.  What's in the oil?  What preservatives are included?  What other ingredients, then Rosemary are in this "extract"?
 
In the end -- I DID take a chance, and try "Jennie-O 99/1 Ground Turkey".  I got a migraine, tight chest, rash, and all my sinuses swelled shut so I couldn't breathe.  So there is definitely SOMETHING in there other than what Hormal refers to as "Natural".
 

 

 

 

So.....  if its just rosemary... they can't tell you anything else is in it.   It sounds like it is gluten free.  They label it as such.  Many of us use this product.  

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I've eaten Jenny-O without any issues. Perhaps it is another intolerance but not gluten?

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I should have clarified in my long post above -- I have Celiac, but I'm ALSO allergic to dairy, soy, grains, nightshades, corn. I have to basically eat Paleo, and not by choice.  This has all happened in the last few years, like my immune system gradually just crapped out.

 

Back to Jenny-O… if you google, a lot of people have bad reactions to their Ground Turkey, and a lot of people also have problems getting a straight answer out of them about what's in the "natural" flavorings.  

 

Did you know some strawberry and raspberry flavorings are made from animal anal glands?  Which allows the manufacturer to label them as "natural"?  My point being… "natural" has no guidelines under current food labeling laws, and can mean many things.

 

Did you know manufacturers are not required to disclose soy as an ingredient if derived from certain seeds?  One manufacturer told me "FDA's Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act does not require these types of oils to be labeled as a soy allergen".  My point being… If you have ANY allergies you can't believe what you read on the package.

 

The "natural flavoring" of rosemary oil in Jenny-O Ground Turkey probably IS made from the oil of real, natural rosemary.  However there's probably other additives in the oil itself, to make the oil stay fresh, or stay stable, etc.  Manufacturers are NOT required to list this kind of thing, they can legally claim it to be "natural flavoring" and tell customers who ask that it's just Rosemary Oil.  

 

Make sense?  Not sure why I'm bothering, my intent was to be helpful but some folks on here do seem to get defensive.  I used to be able to eat Jenny-O Ground Turkey 3 or 4 years ago.  Now I react severely within minutes.  Maybe the Turkey is ground on non-dedicated equipment.  Maybe there are other additives in the oil.  Who knows.  I DO know Jenny-O are the most secretive of ANY of the many manufacturers I've contacted in 5 years.

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I forgot to mention… to avoid additives, and production cross contamination with gluten or ANY allergens…

 

I now grind my own turkey, and it's way easier than I thought.  

 

You will need a food processor, here's how:

 

- Cut Turkey (or any meat) into 1 inch cubes.

- Place cubes on plate/baking-sheet and pop in freezer for 20 minutes

- Take out of freezer, put small amount in food processor

- Pulse for 1 or 2 seconds repeatedly until your meat is ground

- Repeat with rest of meat, you may need to refreeze if it becomes soft

- Bingo, ground meat with no additives or cross-contamination

 

Hope this is useful to somebody  :D

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