As 2018 comes to a close, it turns out pigs really can fly. For the second year in a row now, pork products have been flying off shop shelves at unprecedented rates with sales continuing to help drive the meat and poultry category as a whole.
Overall, pork products have continued to triumph in volume sales this calendar season and have been the key protein dominating the more processed categories of meat such as bacon and sausages, year-on-year.
In the grand scheme of things, pork hasn’t seen a massive amount of change across 2018 when compared to the rest of the sector and finds itself securely placed third among fresh primary meat and poultry sales, with chicken and beef firmly positioned on top as always.
This said, red meats; including beef and lamb are nonetheless continuing to decline this year, whereas pork has returned to volume growth. Powered by 419,000 more consumer trips compared to last year, shoppers are continuing to buy into the flavoursome, less pricey poultry.
Particularly, the significant meat cuts behind this increase of interest derive from pork steaks, up 14% and shoulder joints, often used for the growing demand of pulled pork, up a resounding 34%.
These popularity surges are likely to have come as a result of greater 2018 promotions and the change of season – however, the value of fresh pork is still in decline and prices have recently fallen across all major cuts, down 2.6% on average despite its increase in volume growth.
With Christmas on the horizon, we’re already beginning to see the snowballing demand for turkey, and with whole birds returning to growth ready for the festive season - its unlikely pork will continue to increase at a competitive rate for the remainder of the year.
Regardless of the change in season, we expect pork to be straight back on the scene in the New Year and continue its rise in sales throughout 2019, proving yet again that it’s still kind of a pig deal!