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Unleash the Hogs! China Takes Its Pork Seriously

Monday, 18 Jul 2011 | 1:24 PM ET

A few weeks ago we made a joke that bacon inflation is so out of control that the US needs to start seriously thinking about a Strategic Bacon Reserve—a reserve supply of bacon to tap in times of crisis. (And yes, we here at the Pony Blog do consider skyrocketing bacon prices a crisis.)

Dorling Kindersley | Getty Images

Well, as it turns out, they don't joke about such things in China, where up to 70 percent of the meat consumed is pork. They have a four-month pork stockpile and, with prices up 38 percent in some areas this year, they're about to unleash the hounds, the New York Times reported over the weekend.

Of course, having a strategic pork reserve isn’t as clean-cut a solution as it sounds: Frozen meat doesn’t keep for more than four months and live hogs have to be fed and kept, which isn’t saving you any money. In some places, the New York Times notes, they have a virtual reserve, where the government pays farmers a subsidy to keep their herds at certain levels regardless of demand or prices.

Hey, at least they’re trying.

The economy may have forced the US to sit back on the bench in the space race, but c’mon, America. Are we going to let China beat us in the hog race?

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  • Cindy Perman is a writer at CNBC.com, covering jobs, real estate, retirement and personal finance.

  • Based in Los Angeles, Jane Wells is a CNBC business news reporter and also writes the Funny Business blog for CNBC.com.

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