SAN RAFAEL, Calif. -- Vigilance about consumer demands for healthy products has prompted Petrini's Markets here to unveil a new line of "Lean & Natural" Beef in its 13 Bay Area stores.
"People are health-conscious and looking for a leaner type of beef," said Ken Buschur, meat merchandiser, Petrini's.
Buschur said the chain's decision to offer a line of natural beef cuts, was based on requests from customers. Other similar products, such as branded Coleman's natural beef, have been offered in the past, he said. The new line, however, is being marketed as a Petrini's private-label offering.
"Our customers have been telling us for some time now that they love our meats, but want leaner, lower fat products," said Ron Glass, president and chief executive officer of parent company Bay Area Foods, in a statement.
"With Petrini's new, exclusively provided private-label 'Lean & Natural' Beef, we are able to meet customers' demands and to offer a new line of meats in addition to Petrini's popular 'Choice' selections."
In addition to its lower fat and cholesterol content, the Lean & Natural products strive for zero content of residues of pesticides, herbicides and growth hormones. The supplier, Chicago-based Natural Meat Specialists, tests for over 45 compounds and guarantees that any meat found to contain them is sent back, Buschur said.
Available in the self-serve meat case, the Lean & Natural products are priced 40 cents to 60 cents lower than Choice beef, he told SN. Promotions at the time of the interview had been limited to price features on specific cuts of Lean & Natural beef.
Buschur said it was too early to tell what the consumer response would be. "We just started last weekend featuring the cuts," he said.