Applegate, Bridgewater, N.J., is progressing its mission – Changing The Meat We Eat – by removing carrageenan from its poultry deli meat varieties.

Applegate is also enhancing its deli ham varieties, and revealed a new packaging design to provide an easier experience for consumers in-store and at-home.

“We’re proud to be a brand that not only listens to consumer feedback, but [also] a brand that takes action on that feedback,” says Nicole Glenn, vice president of marketing. “Carrageenan is an ingredient Applegate consumers said they wanted removed from our poultry deli meat, so when we developed a way to replace it and improve the taste of those varieties, it was an easy decision to move forward with a carrageenan-free recipe. Although the USDA overruled the recommendation from the National Organic Standards Board to remove carrageenan from the list of approved ingredients by the end 2018, we’re moving ahead and taking it out of both our organic and natural poultry deli meat varieties. We’ve never been the type of brand to take the easy way out. We required a no antibiotics policy for the farms we source our meat from long before any government agency stepped in.”

Applegate formed a partnership with the Whole30 program earlier this year. The transition to carrageenan-free poultry deli varieties will happen in phases, starting in July with the Applegate Organics pre-sliced line, and followed by the Applegate Naturals pre-sliced line in October.

Applegate also plans to roll out a new packaging design for its product lines, starting with the Applegate Organics pre-sliced deli, which now includes an easy-to-open, peel-and-reseal tab and uses less plastic.

“For consumers who took the time to call and write to us about their difficulties opening our deli meat packaging, I can confidently say the switch to a new deli packaging with a peel-and-reseal tab provides a much more enjoyable experience,” says Glenn.