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Eat Well, Save Money: BJ's Offers Everyday Low Prices on Top Quality Organic Groceries, Natural Foods Versus Supermarket Prices

NATICK, Mass., April 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Although food prices have risen sharply over the last 12 months, organic food sales' double-digit growth trend, which began in 1997, is expected to continue in 2008, according to the Organic Trade Association. While the perception is that organics are healthier and safer than conventional foods, they are also more expensive. Because of the uncertainty in the American economy, consumers are looking to strike a balance between their desire to eat well and their need to save money. So how can Americans eat these healthy foods without breaking the bank?

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The values wholesale clubs provide are helping consumers save money every day on groceries, and these savings are found throughout the organic and natural food selections at BJ's Wholesale Club. For example, six Stonyfield Farms 10 oz. Organic Smoothies at a supermarket would cost a consumer $10.14. At BJ's, a six pack of Stonyfield Farms 10 oz. Organic Smoothies costs $6.99, a savings of over $3.00. Two Silk Vanilla 1/2 gallon containers cost $6.58 at a supermarket, which is 59 cents more than a two pack costs at BJ's.

"We believe our organic foods and natural meat and poultry provide the exceptional quality our members have come to expect at a price they can afford," said Laura Sen, president and chief operation officer of BJ's Wholesale Club. "These two categories are growing exponentially and are on a pace that is outgrowing other product categories."

BJ's carries an assortment of organic dairy products, as well as fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables. Some organic brands available at BJ's Wholesale Club include Horizon, Stonyfield Farms, Bigelow, Back to Nature, Silk, Eggland's Best, Earth's Pride and Heinz.

All About Organics

Organic meat, poultry, eggs and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormones. Before a product can be labeled "organic," a Government-approved certifier inspects the farm where the food is grown to make sure the farmer is following all the rules necessary to meet USDA organic standards. Companies that handle or process organic food before it gets to your local wholesale club must be certified, too.

"All of our organic foods feature delicious and nutritious items that meet the USDA's strict standards for organic products," said Sen.

Natural Meats and Poultry Exceed Regulations

Meat and poultry are the only foods that are officially considered "natural" by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and they must not contain any artificial flavoring, coloring, chemical preservatives or synthetic ingredients. They must also have been minimally processed. By federal law, chicken and pork cannot be given hormones, but can be given antibiotics.

"BJ's natural meat and poultry selections surpass federal guidelines," said Sen. "Our natural meat and poultry have never ever been given antibiotics or hormones and are fed a vegetarian diet. By comparison, few supermarkets sell natural meat and poultry that have 'never ever' been given hormones or antibiotics." BJ's carries natural poultry in more than 125 clubs nationwide (60 of those also carry natural beef and pork).

Vacuum Skin Packaging Locks In Freshness Longer

BJ's Vacuum Skin Packaging increases the freshness of packaged meats and poultry. "Our packaging for our natural meat and poultry products extends the shelf life of products and reduces ice crystallization, freezer burn and increases tenderness in beef," said Sen. "In addition, chicken, pork and beef are able to stay fresher longer."

Additional Natural Products

While the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not formally define "natural," it hasn't objected to the use of the word for products that do not contain artificial colors, flavors or synthetic substances. BJ's offers a variety of non-meat and poultry products that fit this definition, including:

-- Mauna Loa Macadamia Nuts

-- Nature Valley Crunchy Granola Bars and Sparkling Apple Juice

-- Haagen Dazs Ice Cream

-- Stacy's Pita Chips

-- Tom's of Maine Toothpaste

Continuing Expansion

Sen reiterated the organic and natural food selection at BJ's is undergoing continuous expansion. "With the popularity of items like 100-calorie packs and flavored waters, consumers continue to show that products related to health and fitness are extremely important to them," said Sen. "We take pride in being able to provide our members with additional organic and natural food selections on a regular basis."

For more information on Club locations and membership information, visit .

About BJ's Wholesale Club

BJ's Wholesale Club is dedicated to providing its members with high-quality, brand name food and merchandise at prices that are significantly lower than the prices found at supermarkets, supercenters, department stores, drug stores and specialty retail stores. BJ's offers low BJ's Member Pricing on a huge selection of top-brand apparel and accessories, small appliances, consumer electronics, fine jewelry, groceries and other quality merchandise.

Headquartered in Natick, Massachusetts, BJ's Wholesale Club, Inc. is a leading operator of warehouse clubs in the eastern United States. The Company currently operates 177 clubs and 100 gas stations in 16 eastern states. Shop online or learn more about BJ's Wholesale Club at .

SOURCE BJ's Wholesale Club
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