Easter ham sales likely to mirror 2020

Total retail pounds sold in 2020 up 2%, value up 14.5%.


Krissa Welshans, National Hog Farmer 

Apr 02, 2021


Easter was very different in 2020, changing how people gathered and ate in 2020, which impacted pork and ham sales. To a large degree, the National Pork Board (NPB) expects 2021 to be somewhat similar.


“When we look at U.S. retail ham sales for the three weeks leading up to Easter 2020, we see a 1.7% increase in total pounds sold – 108.6 million pounds sold in 2020, versus 107 million pounds sold in 2019,” NPB reported. According to data from research firm Nielsen, the dollar spend for the same period was up 14.5%, from $217.3 million to $248.7 million.


The 2% increase in volume in 2020 may indicate that the Easter ham was part of consumers’ plans to try to keep the holiday as normal as possible in a very abnormal circumstance, NPB suggested.


Still, in the absence of large family gatherings, NPB said consumers were looking for smaller portions – not the traditional 10-12-pound Easter ham that feeds a large group. Those smaller portions – half-or quarter hams, ham steaks, etc. - typically have a higher unit price...