Chick-fil-A Headquarters Visit Update

Let me first start by saying this – Thank you for all your words of encouragement last week before my visit to consult with Chick-fil-A at its headquarters.

The visit did not result in everything I had hoped, but did exceed my expectations in terms of the overall experience and hospitality extended to me.

CFA Visit
I met with 7 key members of their corporate team (as well as others) throughout the visit:

  • V.P. of Innovation and Service
  • V.P. of Brand and Strategy
  • Lead Dietitian
  • Senior Director of Menu Innovation & Design
  • Corporate Public Relations
  • Food and Product Safety
  • Lead Food Technologist

During the 4 hour meeting, we covered:

  • The history of Chick-fil-A and its menu progression
  • New product creation
  • Quality and source of their chicken
  • Use of antibiotics in their chicken
  • Removal of high fructose corn syrup from their products
  • The packaging and cooking method of their new oatmeal
  • Reduction in sodium
  • MSG
  • Anti-foaming agent preservative TBHQ
  • Artificial coloring
  • Labeling of GMOs (Prop 37)

I have several follow up items from my visit that I would like to get more information on before giving my full and detailed report.

Stay tuned for that in the next few weeks!

Your support means the world to me – Thank you again.

Food Babe

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54 Responses to “Chick-fil-A Headquarters Visit Update”

  1. Haynes P

    So exciting! You are truly an Ambassador for health and wellness. Can’t wait to hear!!

    Reply
  2. karen

    Way to go!

    Reply
  3. Janet R. Chamberlain

    I wish that they understood that in Christian faith you also need to take care of your body. I think that is something looked over often in religions.

    Reply
    • D Barrett (to Janet R. Chamberlain)

      Wow! So glad somebody else “gets it”!!!

      Chick-fil-A claims to stand on Christian fundamentals, however they use GMO ingredients. No time to get into it here, but GMOs are an abomination and it is clear that they are in the Bible if you have a full understanding of the Book of Genesis.

      Reply
      • John Perkins (to D Barrett)

        I don’t get why people eat meat anyway?
        Of all the agricultural land in the U.S., 80% is used to raise animals for food and grow grain to feed them—that’s almost half the total land mass of the lower 48 states. Its a vicious cycle and the slaughtering of animals worsens are carbon imprint on the planet when you really get into the facts.
        For instance, the massive amounts of excrement produced by livestock farms emit toxic gases such as hydrogen sulfide and ammonia into the air. Roughly 80% of ammonia emissions in the U.S. come from animal waste. And there’s more. Go Veg is all I’m sayin’ without pointing fingers. Peace!

      • James (to John Perkins)

        Because meat is delicious and, without a doubt, god put all the delectable animals on this planet for their inevitable date with my BBQ. I’m especially a fan of venison and pheasant.

      • Eric (to James)

        I literally laughed out loud. Wrong but funny James!

      • Carolyn (to James)

        James! Don’t remind me of meat. I agree is it so good!

      • Janet R. Chamberlain (to John Perkins)

        I’m actually vegan right now because of dietary issues, but I don’t think everyone should cut it out of their diets. I think we could eat a LOT less meat and supplement with Amazing fruits and veggies.

        Anyways, this commentary thread was about how a lot of Christian believers do not honor their bodies and put pure elements into them. Chikfila is only perpetuating this because they are deemed a Christian company telling other Christians that it is okay to eat this horrifying and disgusting food. I’m glad to be separated from chikfila and all fast food of it’s kind.

      • Jenifer (to John Perkins)

        John…. eating meat is not the problem… it’s the fact that meat production in our current food envioronment is not the holistic way for animals to be raised. Cows are not designed to live in CAFOs or live on grains. Farms that follow a holistic & natural routine of raising animals as they were designed to be raised (for bovines, on grasses, not grains) do not pollute the earth. Not all folks need to become veggies or vegan to heal the land, but instead folks need to get back to treating & feeding animals like they should be treated & fed. I totally recommend Micahel Pollan’s book “The Omnivore’s Delimma”. Learning how the commercial food system runs & then comparing it to a local based food system is really eye opening!

      • John Perkins (to Jenifer)

        Unfortunately you’re not seeing the whole picture. Please read up on the environmental issues which are huge (the blood run off into our water, the anti-biotics/steroids, the disease. the key is profits, not health). We all know meats not necessary in a diet. Plus, have you seen these slaughterhouses? Cutting live animals acting like they don’t have an emotion or feeling of pain? Just seems so ew while I sit there watching others drip chicken juice from their mouths!
        I’m not a huge preacher on this topic around my circles even though it may look like I am. However, when it comes to “food sites” that promote healthy eating I can’t stand behind someone’s efforts to make Chick Fail a better product when it will always be a bad product. Just the mere fact that you mention their name gives them publicity they want. You indirectly have helped them grow their business.
        I can eat a vegetable raw from my garden and its good. Can’t do that safely with meat no matter where its lived. I’m not even a believer in god so that has nothing to do with my belief that we should not be eating meat, its about health. The fact that they promote themselves as anti-gay christians selling chemical fried chicken to the public is one of the biggest jokes on the planet. And funnier is someone cares to try and make it healthier??? People eat the chemical chicken and over time they need pills to stop the cancer that comes from it. Nice circle of life you got going there. Just sayin’!

  4. Bridgette

    Can’t believe they agreed to meet with you! You are very articulate and I’m sure you were calm, cool and collected. Looking forward to the full report!

    Reply
  5. Katie

    So awesome!! Can’t wait to hear about it more! Since having my son in April and following yours and Lisa Leaks (sp?) blog I have really been paying more attention to what I feed my son as well as my husband and myself. I make my sons food, all organic, and if I dont make it I make sure to buy only organic pouches, but am still a little leery if they are ok? Something to think about for your next investigation maybe? Babyfood brands?

    Reply
    • Cady (to Katie)

      That’s a great suggestion, there is a TON of baby- and toddler-specific food out there and I bet there are some misleading labels just like with adult foods.

      Reply
      • Katie (to Cady)

        Yes, I read the lables and make sure it only has the fruites or veggies in it…some have water to make it a little thinner and that is fine, but I make sure there are no chemical preserv. and such. Luckily he is only on purees for now…but he has started to eat a lot more so I know he will want a change soon.

      • Cady (to Katie)

        Oh – forgot to add above, we totally skipped the baby food stage with our son. Check out “baby-led weaning” if you’re interested in graduating to table foods with your little one. It worked out very well for us and everyone we know who has given it a try.

      • Marlene Dotterer (to Cady)

        I’d like to jump in and second the comment about skipping the “baby food” stage. My kids went straight to real people food. At first, they are still getting most of their nutrients from breastmilk, so we just introduced soft foods one at a time. Things like homemade applesauce, smashed avocado or banana… easy things. Honest, you don’t need to spend a penny on special food for your kids.

      • Kim Parrish (to Cady)

        Yes for sure…there are some baby formulas and foods that are loaded with GMO’s…Beech-Nut, Enfamil, Good Start, Nestle, and Enfamil are some of the bigger companies KNOWN to have GMOS in their baby products….SAD :(

    • Kirsten (to Katie)

      You definitely can skip all the premade baby food. I have 2 kids and have never bought a jar/pouch or anything. All you do is buy the food, cook it (baking keeps the most nutrients), and puree it or mash it to your liking.

      Reply
    • Iluminada Williams (ILU) (to Katie)

      Try the “HONEST” brand for kids or babies! It is a new company founded by actress Jessica Alba, and the products are as pure as they can be.

      Go to: http://www.honest.com

      You can order the products ONLINE.

      Reply
  6. Amy@TwoBGardening

    Keep up the great work!! You are an inspiration to us all :)

    Reply
  7. Lel

    Can’t wait to hear all about your visit. How exciting is it that one of the up and coming unsacred food establishment giving a real food ambassador the opportunity to listen and educate the coroporate officers on whole foods and how consumers feel about knowing what is in their food.

    Reply
  8. Rachel W.

    I’m looking forward to the full report. It sounds like you covered quite a bit.

    Reply
  9. Allison Naseri

    Very exciting. I hope to be able to return to Chick-fil-a again one day!

    Reply
  10. MICAH WHITEHEAD

    Congrats on getting this far…Keep it up for us! Thanks

    Reply
  11. Michelle

    I’m really looking forward to reading the updates on this one, especially the dialogue on Prop 37 (I’m currently wearing my Yes on 37 t-shirt). Change has got to start somewhere, and I think it would be so amazing if a fast food company was one of the ones to be in on the beginning. How awesome would it be if a company who sells quick, cheap meals could be a catalyst for healthier living?

    Reply
  12. Judy Bright

    You are amazing. Thank you for everything you do!

    Reply
  13. Veena

    You have come a long way dealing with the Chick-fil A company!
    You are making the big difference! It takes courage and wisdom to deal with giant companies and you certainly are the instrument!! Love
    Mom

    Reply
  14. Ashley H

    Food Babe for president!

    Reply
  15. D Barrett

    Any talk of their use of GMO canola oil?

    Reply
  16. Heather

    Can’t wait to read your report!

    Reply
  17. Badfoodbro

    Great job Vani .. not easy to have it be 7 on 1 :)

    Reply
  18. Melanie

    I would love it if you came to the midwest and did a conference here, say for the hospitals. Hospitals are a place where we take our bodies to well but have you seen the food they serve?

    Reply
  19. Susanne

    Food Babe…I always enjoy reading your blog, and I truly appreciate all you do in the way of informing your readers about food risks, food legislation, GMO information and much, much more…but I don’t understand why you say that Chickfila exceeded your expectations in their hospitality extended to you? What expectations did you have?

    Reply
  20. Jolie Hornyak

    Thank you for your hard work in this area!!! Can’t wait to hear more.

    Reply
  21. Sarah

    Super excited to hear more!! Thank-you so much for going on behalf of us. You rock food babe!

    Reply
  22. Carolyn

    They don’t look very happy! You are doing a good thing Food Babe! I am glad you are looking out for us!

    Reply
  23. Cindy

    Vanni–Good job! Looking forward to your full Chick-fil-A report!

    Reply
  24. Stacy P.

    I, too, am excited to read your full report. As a native Georgian and someone with many friends who work at CFA corporate, I’m so happy they set up a meeting with you. As far as exceeding your expectations of hospitality, I’m not sure what you were expecting. I have yet to meet an unkind CFA employee and am sure they treated you with the respect you deserved. I know they learned a lot from you about the changes people are wanting to see in their food sources.
    I’m also glad you came on a week when our beautiful fall weather was starting to show! Hope you enjoyed your time down South — and thank you for your efforts!

    Reply
  25. quanda simpkins

    gret job, love this blog so informative.

    Reply
  26. Natalie S.

    So excited about this! We recently attempted to speak to Chick-fil-A about the same topics but could never get a call back. This is Wonderful.

    Reply
  27. Ernie

    Eat More Kale!

    Reply
  28. Shelby

    When do you think your report will come out? Can’t wait to hear!

    Reply
  29. Amy

    Vani,

    Have there been any more updates as a result of your visit? Any feedback from Chick-fil-a?

    Amy

    Reply
  30. Tracy

    What ever happened to this report?

    Reply
  31. shmrete

    Your assistant Jill doesn’t seem to know where the follow-up report to this is, either. Did you ever write one?

    Reply
  32. Kristen

    Would love to hear the results from this meeting. Great blog!

    Reply
  33. Laura

    I am also interested in an update?

    Reply
  34. Jones sabo luxury americans as their financial circumsta

    I like this post, enjoyed this one thanks for putting up.

    Reply
  35. Jayson Whitham

    This is such a very good idea. A friend of mine sent me your weblink. It’s such a excellent way to engage readers offline and get physical mail which everyone loves. I may should do this after my blog is up and running a bit more.

    Reply
  36. Nick C

    What ever happened with this piece? I was looking thru the archives for the follow up info but i couldnt find any

    Reply
  37. Sandy

    I hope Chick Filet will also remove the ingredient “tamarind” from some of their sauces. I am deathly allergic to it! Seems like it is gradually creeping into our food!
    Example: Cheese Whiz, some barbecue sauces, worcestershire sauces & peanut sauces. It’s also in many Hispanic foods.

    Reply
  38. Penny

    Dear Vani,
    Ghiradelli chocolate is also using TBHQ preservative in all chocolate products. i havetheir FB page that it causes asthma and ADHD in children among other things and in adults, it alters our DNA. Please STOP USING TBHQ!!!!
    Its close to V-Day & wanted to share this.

    Reply

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