HOW TO EAT WITH YOUR CONSCIENCE: UNDERSTAND THE ORIGIN OF YOUR FOOD
The lack of transparency in our food system is both frustrating and alarming to the conscientious consumers who want to make informed decisions about the people and values they support when they eat. But most brands obscure the stories of their producers, either because they aren’t proud of their practices or because they are too far removed to really understand them. Neither is true of Grass Roots. Our business is owned by the farmers raising the foods we sell. We’re proud of our animal husbandry standards and the careful work of the butchers we partner with, and we want to make everything from our animal husbandry standards to our pricing totally clear.
So far, we’ve shown you our costs for raising a chicken, taught you how to learn more about your chicken by reading its label, and explained why transparency is important to us. Now, let’s zoom out for a bit and take a look at how a chicken gets from our farmer’s pasture to your front door. Over the past several months, we’ve been working with Provenance, a U.K.-based tech group who has built a platform that enables brands to tell the stories behind their products, to make it easier for you to understand the origins of the meats we produce. By publically tracking every step of our supply chain, we can show you the journey of our foods from farm to fork.
It’s clear to us that consumers are increasingly interested in knowing more about their food. We’ve heard this very thing from many of our customers, that they choose to buy from us because they feel more connected to what they eat. And according to a 2016 Label Insights study, “Nearly all respondents (94%) say it is important to them that the brands and manufacturers they buy from are transparent about what is in their food and how it is made.” Here’s a graphic that gives a bit more detail to this feedback.
It’s our hope is that, by using the Provenance platform to trace the origins of our products, we’re giving consumers the information they are looking for. This blockchain-backed technology allows users to interact with our supply chain and learn more about every link. By simply scanning a QR code, you can access the history of the product in your hand.
Discover where and how the animal was raised, what it ate, when it was harvested, and who processed it. Because each of the people involved with the crafting of the final product—from farmer to butcher—is visible and active on the platform, you can click into their account to learn more about their story.
Today, all boxes going to Golden Gate Meat Company—a wholesale distributor in San Francisco helping us test this technology—are labeled with the QR code. Next week, every package of chicken will be printed with the code as well. And within a couple of months all our products will be traceable through Provenance.
Our commitment to total, company-wide transparency in unwavering. We promise to continue to explore the best ways to get you the information you crave so that you feel empowered to make decisions about your food sourcing.
—Cody Hopkins, General Manager