How America Fell in Love with Bacon Again

Bacon is booming in America at the tune of $4 Billion year in sales. Even the butchers I go to now are offering better prices at the counter for it than the package sitting on the freezer shelf.

In August 2015, Bloomberg reported pork bellies (where bacon comes from) were booming at $1.70lb.

Today, CNBC noted that pork bellies supplies in cold storage were at an all time high since 1915!

So what turned Americans back onto bacon?

[Early 1990’s] For years, fast-food outlets had been offering extra-lean burgers and sandwiches. At the same time, they were responding to the increased liability from food poisoning lawsuits (especially after the deadly 1993 E. coli outbreak at Jack in the Box) by cooking all their burgers to well done.  “Now, if they were to put bacon on that, it would have been a huge success.” Adding a single slice of bacon to those sandwiches not only improved the taste and mouthfeel by multiples

The first chain to do this was Hardee’s….The answer came in 1992, with the debut of the Hardee’s Frisco Burger, a line of sandwiches featuring bacon. It was to be a momentous event for fast food, and bacon’s fate, in America. “That’s the first time a chain ever put bacon on everything. It was tremendously successful,” says Cizek. “People would buy it, regardless of health cares. It just went.”

I encourage people to read the rest of this great historical account of marketing via Bloomberg Business.

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