Locally Grown

What this means: This claim is not regulated by the USDA. Generally, this term means the food was grown, raised, or produced close to the point of sale or within a certain region, although there is no definition for the term “local” so this claim would be subject to the producer’s interpretation.

Required: No.

Naturally Raised

What this means: The USDA has defined this claim to mean that the livestock used for these products were raised entirely without growth promotants or hormones, antibiotics 108 and have never been fed antibiotics.109

Required: No.

Heritage Breed

What this means: This claim is not regulated by the USDA. Generally, heritage foods are derived from traditional breeds of animals. Typically, heritage breeds have slower growth rates and are well adapted to their environment. However, this claim does not necessarily mean the animal was raised outdoors, in pasture, or not confined.

Required: No.

Uncured

What this means: This claim means the product has been processed without the use of nitrates or nitrites.

Required: Yes, if the product is one that is typically cured (e.g., bacon, salami, etc.), and it has been made without nitrates or nitrites, the USDA requires that the label say the product is uncured and include language indicating the product has not been preserved and needs to be kept refrigerated below 40 degrees at all times.

Minimally Processed

What this means: The USDA defines this claim to mean that the product was processed such that it was not fundamentally changed during processing.

Required: No.