Consumer reporter Pat Volchok
gives a behind-the-scenes look at
Costco products and services. Send
your questions about this article
A higher ground
IRIDIO PHO TOGRAPH Y
organic ground beef
Bolognese in peppers
FOR THE TASTY organic-beef
dish pictured above, visit
Costco.com, scroll to the bottom of the home page, click
on “Costco Connection Magazine,” then “Recipes the
Costco Way, A Decade of
Cooking The Costco Way.” At
the top of the gray bar, click
“pages” and go to page 172.
92 ;e Costco Connection MAY 2012
COSTCO KIRKLAND SIGNATURE™ is on solid
ground with the recent addition of U.S. Department
of Agriculture (USDA) certified 100 percent
organic ground beef to Costco’s meat case.
“It’s a program five years in the making,” reports
Costco assistant general merchandising manager
Organic beef farming is a highly labor-intensive
process and takes years of preparation. A limited
supply of cattle combined with no federal subsidies
for farmers also makes it a costly venture. “We had
to find suppliers who could not only meet our
exceedingly tough specifications but who also had
the resources enabling us to offer this item to our 42
million U.S. members,” says Bob.
With the addition of the Kirkland Signature
organic ground beef program, industry experts say
that Costco is now the largest seller of organic
ground beef in the country.
Costco’s organic beef suppliers
It is difficult for Costco to source all of the organic
beef needed for the Kirkland Signature ground beef
program exclusively from U.S. suppliers, so organic
beef is also procured from Canada and Australia. “All
three countries have proven to be a great source of
organic beef for this program,” says Bob.
The Australian cattle raised for the program are
100 percent organic grass-fed. Approximately half of
the U.S. and Canadian animals are grass-fed; the
other half is finished on organic grains such as barley, flax, wheat and corn.