Prices are at a record high for wholesale pork belly, the largest increase in price since 2013. Lean hog futures at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange hit a 2½-year high in early July, according to the Wall Street Journal. Local stores say bacon prices have increased significantly just recently.
“The bacon is out of sight,” said Dave Hoffer, owner of Zinks Meats & Fine Wines. “Especially in the last couple weeks, we had to raise the prices here because of it. There isn’t really an increase in demand from customers either, it’s staying constant.”
Altin Kalo, an economist at the Steiner Consulting Group, told the Wall Street Journal that high prices have lead butchers and restaurants to actually slice bacon more thinly or introduce alternate menu items. Other anaylsts say the high prices aren’t going to stop restaurants and customers from buying more bacon — it’s a year-long favorite meat.
“I don’t really think cost will affect the demand very much because people who like it and prefer it, the cost won’t deter them as long as it’s not ridiculous,” said John Rodgers, a production employee for Copey’s Butcher Shop in Medway.
Reporter Sarah Cavender contributed to this story.