Author Topic: Global Bacon Shortage  (Read 5123 times)

Offline akr71

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Global Bacon Shortage
« on: September 26, 2012, 05:58:44 AM »
Global bacon shortage 'unavoidable'

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2012/09/25/bacon-shortage-pigs.html

Quote
Experts say the world could be on the verge of a significant bacon shortage because of rising feed costs and declining pig populations.

Britain's National Pig Association said Tuesday that an international shortage of bacon and other pork products is now "unavoidable," and expects higher prices for consumers soon.

Recent data shows Europe's pig population declining at an alarming rate "and this is a trend that is being mirrored around the world," the NPA said in a release. Every major pork-producing European nation has fewer pigs today than they did last year, even as demand for pork products has remained high.

A crippling drought in the U.S. farm belt caused the price of corn and soy, two staples of agricultural feed, to skyrocket. Retailers have been thus far unwilling to pass those costs on to consumers, and instead have been paying pig farmers less for each pig.

The problem is not limited to Europe.

The Canadian Pork Council confirms that the size of North America's pig herd is shrinking, which will drive up prices as farmers start to limit supply.

"It's because of the rise in the price of corn," the agency's public relations manager, Gary Stordy, told CBC News. "Producers are losing money right now and like any other business, when you're not making money, you shut down."

U.S. laws that mandate a certain percentage of the corn crop go into ethanol fuel for the transportation industry had lit a fire under corn prices even before the drought. The size of the continent's corn crop has been rising for a decade, before falling precipitously this year.

The potential pork shortage has made waves on the internet, where bacon in particular has its own frenzied fan club.
Read the online reaction.

When that happens, other corn buyers, including pig farmers, get hit.

"You can buy futures for some commodities, but not feed," Stordy said. "Farmers can't find a way to hedge their bets, so they have to pay the market price," which has suddenly become unsustainable, he said.

The cost increases have made it no longer cost-efficient for farmers to raise pigs, NPA says. It recently warned that a fall of two per cent in the number of hogs slaughtered next year would push consumer prices up by 10 per cent

"NPA believes slaughtering could fall by as much as 10 per cent in the second half of next year, which indicates a doubling of the price of … pork and pork products," the agency said.
Andy

Amherst, NS - Canada

Offline dak0415

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2012, 07:18:47 AM »
Well, Weaze will have to give up some/all of his hop freezer space for bacon.  So sorry dude!
Dave Koenig
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Offline 1vertical

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2012, 07:58:09 AM »
What about all the members that have recently taken up
charcuterie ?  Sausage and hog jowles and bellies   :'(
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Offline euge

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2012, 09:53:02 AM »
What about all the members that have recently taken up
charcuterie ?  Sausage and hog jowles and bellies   :'(

I'm getting my belly from the Asian Market down the street for $2.50/lb. Hopefully that won't change... For my sausages I try to find the cheapest cuts from the butt, often trimmings at a discounted price- usually less than $2/lb.

I've known about the impending shortage since the end of July. Have been waiting for the initial decreased prices but so far they haven't materialized. I want to stock up... ;D

But it may be that due to the extensive drought here that our herds have been already culled to what the ranchers and farmers can support. Beef has shot up dramatically. I don't expect to see too much of a price difference in pork. Furthermore the only bacon I eat is what I make. So a scarcity of it on the shelves doesn't directly concern me. But the macro-implications does.

Regardless, the trend has been for prices to increase on everything and the consumer shoulders the burden.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline Slowbrew

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2012, 10:02:46 AM »
What about all the members that have recently taken up
charcuterie ?  Sausage and hog jowles and bellies   :'(

I've known about the impending shortage since the end of July. Have been waiting for the initial decreased prices but so far they haven't materialized. I want to stock up... ;D


Our President ordered the Department of Ag to purchase $170MM worth of meat to support the prices. http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?contentidonly=true&contentid=2012/08/0271.xml .  You will not be seeing a decrease in the retail meat market anytime soon.  Our homeless people will be eating high pork, beef and lamb (and that's okay, they need to eat too) but the folks paying for their own food will only see the increases next year.

My brother-in-law stopped buying calves last year already due to high prices for feeder stock.  Enjoy your meat now.  I fear that we will all need to cut way back on meat in the next couple of years.  I'll be happily surprised if I'm wrong though.

Paul
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Online morticaixavier

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2012, 11:07:43 AM »
What about all the members that have recently taken up
charcuterie ?  Sausage and hog jowles and bellies   :'(

I've known about the impending shortage since the end of July. Have been waiting for the initial decreased prices but so far they haven't materialized. I want to stock up... ;D


Our President ordered the Department of Ag to purchase $170MM worth of meat to support the prices. http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?contentidonly=true&contentid=2012/08/0271.xml .  You will not be seeing a decrease in the retail meat market anytime soon.  Our homeless people will be eating high pork, beef and lamb (and that's okay, they need to eat too) but the folks paying for their own food will only see the increases next year.

My brother-in-law stopped buying calves last year already due to high prices for feeder stock.  Enjoy your meat now.  I fear that we will all need to cut way back on meat in the next couple of years.  I'll be happily surprised if I'm wrong though.

Paul

In general Americans could use to eat less meat anyway. Given that the protein requirements for an average adult are only about 2 ounces a day, the amount of meat one would need to meet those requirements is miniscule. even if that's the only protein you get in your diet a small mcdonalds hamburger is already more than you need.

and the vegetarian steps down off his soap box and drinks a beer (not really cause I am at work)
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Offline dcdwort

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2012, 12:18:07 PM »
It is things like this that want me to hang up this computer job.  I could get a ranch/farm, raise corn to feed my hogs, distill the corn into my own ethanol (for my car!, right), and from this months Brew Your Own, make sauerkraut and malt vinegar to sell in the market, have a garden, grow my own hops,,,,  Hell might as well grow some barley and start malting.     
I think I just figured out my plan for retirement!
Don
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2012, 12:26:04 PM »
It is things like this that want me to hang up this computer job.  I could get a ranch/farm, raise corn to feed my hogs, distill the corn into my own ethanol (for my car!, right), and from this months Brew Your Own, make sauerkraut and malt vinegar to sell in the market, have a garden, grow my own hops,,,,  Hell might as well grow some barley and start malting.     
I think I just figured out my plan for retirement!

Farming is hard work. Malting can be hard work. The guy in MI who is small scale floor malting said that for every ton he makes, he figures he has lifted 15 tons as he turns it. Hard work.
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Offline weazletoe

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2012, 12:30:47 PM »
I can't hear you!
A man works hard all week, so he doesn't have to wear pants all weekend.

Offline dcdwort

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2012, 12:46:29 PM »
I worked on farms and ranches when I was living in OK, have been crotch deep in cow byproduct, worn out from hauling 1000 bales of alfalfa a day, sweated in the cab of a wheat truck and on the seat of a tractor with no cab.  I know what it is like and still want to do it.  Now if I can just convence swmbo!
Don
Bottled:  Nightime Porter, Pumpkin Eater Ale, Big Lass Double IPA, Sholto Scottish Ale, Neville Court ESB, Lowlands Scottish ale 80/, Morining Oatmeal stout, NB 1554 clone, NB SnowDay clone
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Fermenting:

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #10 on: September 26, 2012, 12:49:28 PM »
I worked on farms and ranches when I was living in OK, have been crotch deep in cow byproduct, worn out from hauling 1000 bales of alfalfa a day, sweated in the cab of a wheat truck and on the seat of a tractor with no cab.  I know what it is like and still want to do it.  Now if I can just convence swmbo!

You know what you are getting into.

I used to do a lot of hard work. But I don't know if I could do it day in day out now, and I am in pretty good shape for my age. Too many joints ache after a hard days labor.
Jeff Rankert
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Home-brewing, not just a hobby, it is a lifestyle!

Offline dcdwort

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #11 on: September 26, 2012, 12:59:42 PM »
Oh I know about the aching joints!  My wife has an aunt and uncle that just got back into farming who are in their early seventies and love it.  The rancher where I antelope hunt is about 82, still rides a motorcycle and manages 60 square miles of ranch.  yes that is 38,400 acres.
Don
Bottled:  Nightime Porter, Pumpkin Eater Ale, Big Lass Double IPA, Sholto Scottish Ale, Neville Court ESB, Lowlands Scottish ale 80/, Morining Oatmeal stout, NB 1554 clone, NB SnowDay clone
Planning:
Fermenting:

Offline thebigbaker

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #12 on: September 26, 2012, 01:19:36 PM »
Might be a good time to turn into Billy Ray Valentine and buy, buy, buy pork belly futures!
Jeremy Baker

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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #13 on: September 26, 2012, 01:43:52 PM »
Mort is absolutely correct on most of us eating too much meat.  It was how I was raised, what can I say.

I grew up on a farm (corn, soybeans, alfalfa, hogs, cattle, milking herd, sheep and 100 to 150 chickens/yr) and ya, we worked hard but it was a good life.  There is a difference between ranching and farming though.  Both are hard work.  Intense grain farming and concentrated livestock farms are very difficult ways to make a living today.  I don't have any experience ranching but it always seemed a bit more laid back.

I would have a hobby farm today f I could find the right piece of land for the right price but my wife (town girl) isn't nearly as interested in it as me. 8^)  The advantage of a hobby farm is that I am not trying to send the kids college on income from it.  Mother nature has a nasty sense of humor.

Paul
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Offline el_capitan

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Re: Global Bacon Shortage
« Reply #14 on: September 26, 2012, 07:25:52 PM »
Hey, here's an idea!  Let's stop force-feeding corn to our livestock and let them eat grass, which grows for FREE!! 

Grass-fed is the way to go.  Time to break our obsession with corn.  C'mon people, let's get real here.  If you're still in the dark about the corn issue, check out one of the following:

The Omnivore's Dilemma (Michael Pollan)
Food, Inc (documentary version of Omnivore's Dilemma, essentially)
King Corn (documentary)

What's it going to take to wake America up?
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