Is the ‘Worldwide Bacon Shortage’ for Real?

According to a big PR alarm sounded by the UK’s National Pig Association trade group (a real thing, we assure you), the globe will soon undergo a major pork shortage. Non-Kosher disaster ahead!

Well, right now the problem really stems from an overabundance of pig meat on the market. Porkocalypse, or Aporkalypse if you will, will happen due to a drought in the UK that has pushed the cost of corn and soy feed up, forcing farmers to slaughter more of their pigs, flooding the market with sausage and driving the price of pork down around the world.

The shortage story seems to be part of the trade group’s campaign to get supermarkets and other distributors to pay UK pork farmers more for their products with scare tactics—but it hints at a serious potential problem.

Once the price of pork goes down, it is almost certain to bounce back up—thereby raising the cost of all related consumer products and potentially damaging the global economy.

That threat is much more real than any perceived pork “shortage.” It’s so real, in fact, that the Chinese government maintains a strategic pork reserve (believe it) in order to better hedge against piggy inflation/deflation.

We find this topic fascinating, but we have to ask: Is the trade group really acting in the interest of public health, or is the whole story just a PR stunt designed to inspire a panicked “pork run?”