The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Lifestyle

October 2, 2012

Bacon shortage 'baloney,' but prices to rise

(Continued)

The USDA said the breeding inventory of sows and boars stands at 5.79 million head, down slightly from last year and off 1 percent from the previous quarter.

Such liquidations could mean a temporary glut of pork on the U.S. market, depressing pork prices before the oversupply eases and the volume of pork drops again next year, causing hog prices to rebound, said Ron Plain, an agricultural economics professor at the University of Missouri in Columbia. Consequently, he estimates, the higher costs will be passed along to consumers, who could end up paying 10 percent more for their bacon.

As of Friday, the USDA said, a pound of sliced bacon cost an average of $4.05 at the nation's supermarkets, down 22 cents from a week earlier.

Pig producer Phil Borgic is banking on high prices. With 3,400 sows near Nokomis in central Illinois, Borgic figures he's had to spend $2 million more this year for the 600,000 bushels of corn he feeds his pigs.

Rather than sell off animals on the spot market, the 56-year-old farmer is hedging his bets by contracting them out for slaughter over a staggered period — what he sees only as a break-even proposition.

"The previous couple of years have been good to us," he said. "Then the drought changed the ballgame on a worldwide level."

He waves off the concerns about consumers facing shortages.

"The U.S. has plenty of pork, and we won't run out here," he said. "We'll have some price inflation, but we have plenty of supply."

Text Only
Lifestyle
Photos


Poll

Which foreign crisis is the biggest threat to the security of the United States?

Russia-Ukraine
Israel-Palestine
Iraq
None of the above
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee