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Bacon bites back: No shortage, it's a weather and corn problem

bacon sundae

Photo by @wikijeff via Twitter

Burger King's newly crowned "Bacon Sundae."

Slate has plated up the pandemonium of this week's bacon hysteria, breaking down the Internet's breakdown over what the National Pig Association of Britain called an "unavoidable bacon shortage." The weather forecast, not the bacon forecast, is more to the point, they say. Climate and corn are the issues.

The Center for Agricultural and Rural Development at Iowa State University published a brief in July about the serverity of the drought, corn prices, and the effect on biofuel production.

Drought has sharply decreased the size of the US corn and soybean crops this year. While there is no way of knowing for sure how low yields will go, the continuation of hot and dry weather in the major corn and soybean producing areas indicates that yield losses could be of historic proportions. 


Nobody's bringing home the bacon? Pork shortage possible

Photo by A. Sparrow via Flickr Creative Commons

You may have heard a song on the radio recently. It sounds like Vanilla Ice's classic "Ice Ice Baby". But it was chopped and remixed using the lyric "like a pound of bacon" to create a whole new song, "Ice Ice Bacon".

The piggy has officially jumped the shark.

Interestingly, this news coincides with a Los Angeles Times report on Tuesday that "a world shortage of pork and bacon next year is now unavoidable," according to an industry trade group. 

Britain's National Pig Assn. explained in a news release last week that drought conditions affected crops, which affected feed, which led to declining herds across Europe. Financial Times asserted that the trend "is being mirrored around the world."

The rest of the article talks about percentages of slaughtered pigs and is upsetting. Bottom line, the price of European pork could double next year, and the U.S. pork supply, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, recently hit record high numbers due to farmers scaling down herds as the cost of feeding the animals increases.