Bacon is pork belly that is sliced into thin strips, and is usually cured with salt. Although, bacon is not prepared only from pork belly but from back cuts too, which have a lesser amount of fat content as compared to the belly. The use of bacon dates back to around 1000-1500 B.C., when ancient Romans used to call it ‘petaso’. Muslim and Jewish dominated countries also make bacon from other animals, such as turkey, goat, and beef, as they prohibit the consumption of pork. Bacon is known for its flavor, and it’s the fat which provides most of the flavor. The flavor of bacon available in the market can vary widely, depending on the processing and curing method, breed of the pig, how it is cut, and its feed. Development and growth in the meat processing industry coupled, with an increase in the demand for red meat, is resulting in an upsurge in the demand for bacon and bacon-based products in the food industry.
As the demand for fast food such as hamburgers, bacon sandwiches, bacon pizza, and appetizers has increased, the demand for bacon has also witnessed a surge in the market. As bacon can be molded into a variety of textures and flavors such Irish bacon, Canadian bacon, and American-style bacon, the demand for bacon-based products has increased significantly, which is expected to boost the bacon market over the forecast period. With the increasing demand for bacon, many manufacturers in the food and beverage industry are incorporating bacon in their food products. Such inclusion has enabled the local manufacturers of bacon to expand and reach the global market, which is expected to bolster the growth of the bacon market.
- The consumption of bacon has increased in the past few decades in many developed as well as developing nations, due to the rising demand from the food processing industry, as consumer interest for new products with improved texture and savory aspects has increased significantly over the past few years.
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Some of the key players operating in the global bacon market are Hormel Foods Corporation, Smithfield Foods, Inc., Organic Prairie, Applegate Farms, LLC, True Story Foods, BRF S.A., Foster Farms, Farmland Industries, Inc., JBS S.A., OSI Group, Cargill, Inc., The Oscar Mayer Company, B. & C. Tönnies Fleischwerk GmbH & Co. KG, WH Group, and Karro Food Group, among others.
The global bacon market has progressed over time, due to the upsurge in the demand for bacon in the food and beverage industry, and it is expected to continue its growth in the same mode over the forecast period.
According to the latest data revealed by USDA, the storage of pork bellies is presently 8.8 million tons. The figure might look quite big, but unexpectedly, it is the lowest inventory level since 1957. The bacon market is highly active in nature, as the supply and demand situation keeps on shifting from one hand to another. In 2017, pork bellies were instantly converted into bacon as soon as they were produced, due to the high demand for bacon, leaving less meat available to be stored. Due to the shortage in storage, pork belly prices have also increased by 20%. Although various industry experts believe that, the price increase is temporary, and manufacturers operating in the bacon market could seek this increase in the demand for bacon as an opportunity to capitalize on and increase their market share in the North American market. Moreover, collaborating with big quick serving restaurants and finding new methods of marketing could also help bacon manufacturers flourish in the bacon market over the forecast period.