The alarming headlines came quickly Wednesday morning: "Now It's Getting Serious: 2017 Could See a Bacon Shortage." "Nation's bacon reserves hit 50-year low as prices rise." "Everyone Freak Out! American Is Running Low on Bacon."
And panic people did:
The source of the anxiety was a recent report from the U.S.D.A., boosted by the Ohio Pork Council, which reported that the country's frozen pork belly inventory was at its lowest point in half a century. Pork belly is the source of the greasy, delicious meat slices people love to put on everything. At the end of 2016, the reserves held just 17.8 million pounds, down more than 35 million pounds from the year prior.
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"Today's pig farmers are setting historic records by producing more pigs than ever," Rich Deaton, the president of the council, said in a statement. "Yet our reserves are still depleting."