Did you change the look of your hot dog packaging?
Yes, we did - thanks for noticing! We had heard it was difficult for some consumers to read our packaging, so we switched to a label that uses a stiffer film material with a matte finish to make it easier. This decision also allowed us to switch to a more sustainable packaging that contains 20% post-consumer recycled (PCR) content in every package.
What is post-consumer recycled (PCR) content?
Post-consumer recycled (PCR) content is material made from recycled items such as plastic bottles, cardboard and paper. PCR film offers the same level of protection and performance as regular plastic film, while lessening its impact on landfills.
Does using PCR film change the shelf life of the product?
Although our new packaging doesn’t change the shelf life of our hot dogs, the shelf life for all our hot dogs has increased because we added vinegar as an ingredient. Adding vinegar lowers the pH of the product and thereby reduces the capabilities for microorganisms to grow.
With the hot dog packaging change, have the ingredients also changed?
Yes, we have made a couple formulation changes to enhance the taste and texture of our hot dogs. Changes include:
- Utilizing smokehouses to hardwood smoke our hot dogs. Previously we used liquid smoke.
- A coarser grind to our meats to create an even better “snap” and give our hot dogs a more artisanal texture.
- Adding two new ingredients- vinegar and baking soda to naturally extend the shelf life of our hot dogs and balance the flavors.
Do the new hot dogs feature a casing?
No, only our Natural Stadium Beef and Pork Hot Dog has a casing. All of our other hot dogs are skinless / do not have a casing.
To keep our hot dogs casing free, the meat is stuffed into cellulose casings and cooked. The casings are then removed prior to packaging. Cellulose used with our products is not animal derived. It is made from cotton fibers or wood pulp. They are free of allergens, PVC and BPA.
(Remember the saying about not watching sausage get made? We believe in full disclosure on that topic, check out our YouTube to see how our sausages and hot dogs are made).
What is the source of the Organic Vinegar?
Our organic vinegar is made from organic corn!
Is the Baking Soda organic?
Currently, organic baking soda is not available; however, the baking soda used in our hot dogs is aluminum-free.
Do these hot dogs contain wheat or MSG?
No, our hot dogs do not contain wheat or MSG.
Will these newly formulated hot dogs taste different?
Yes, our reformulated hot dogs will taste slightly different, but for the better. You may notice our hot dogs have a smokier taste; this is due to using a smokehouse to hardwood smoke the meat for that real BBQ flavor. Taste is something we pride ourselves in, so before we release a product with a new formulation it must make it past a taste test with consumers. We are happy to report that consumers preferred the taste of our new hot dogs in a taste test against our previous hot dogs.
Have there been changes in the nutritional information?
Yes. If you look at the nutrition facts panel, you will see some changes when it comes to sodium and cholesterol in particular. For our beef hot dogs, there has been a decrease in sodium, but an increase in cholesterol. Whereas with our poultry hot dogs, there has been a slight increase in sodium (cholesterol remains the same).
When will the new changes occur?
Our reformulated hot dogs began to roll out in stores during the months of May and June. Be on the lookout for their new packaging, which will feature a matte finish instead of a glossy film.
Is it safe to consume the hot dogs in your previous packaging?
Yes! If you see our hot dogs at the store in the glossy film packaging, these are still safe to eat.