A crispy rasher of bacon is becoming an increasingly costly indulgence in the US, where a surging appetite for pigmeat and cutbacks in farmers' swine herds have pushed the price of pork cuts to an all-time high.
On the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, the cost of pork bellies, which are used to produce bacon, has risen by more than 65% in the last 12 months and the wholesale price of pig product hit $1.35 per pound last week – its highest on record.
Analysts say farmers reducing pig herds during the recession, together with swine flu and high feed prices, took their toll. Meanwhile, demand is on the up as consumers trade down to bacon from more expensive meats, while seasonal use reaches a summer peak. (more)