It’s not such hot news for consumers, but Iowa pork producers are enjoying a recent surge in profits due to rising bacon prices. The retail cost of bacon and demand for the product are both rising, according to Steve Meyer, economics director at the Des Moines-based National Pork Producers Council says sliced bacon averaged two-dollars 92-cents a pound at retail outlets in March. That’s up from two-50 a year ago. This year’s price is more than a dollar above bacon prices in 1990. Meyer says the strength in demand may be tied to more restaurants using bacon as a condiment on hamburgers. He says there were some questions about bacon’s healthfulness, but he says that has changed as consumers realize they can eat bacon as part of a balanced healthy diet.Iowa pork producers have seen plummeting prices in recent years, so Meyer says this dramatic upturn in bacon prices and in the demand for bacon is a tremendous plus. He says the hogs are generating 30 to 40 dollars a head in profit, which is welcome to farmers.Meyer predicts most pork producers will continue to see profits throughout this year and into next year. The N-P-P-C says bacon was the most popular pork product used in food services in 1999.
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