Here’s Why Consumer Demand for Meat is Strong
By Kent Bang, Opinion, FarmJournal's Pork
September 8, 2021
I have reported on and read many reports about the robust demand growth of meat in the U.S. in 2021. Demand is being fueled by more spending capacity of consumers, a rebounding economy and the opening up of more foods service in the first half of the year. Consumer spending is hitting record numbers in the first two quarters of 2021, and although economic growth may be slowing, it is still occurring.
The latest consumer spending reports from the Federal Reserve show personal consumption expenditures hovered near pre-COVID-19 record levels in the first quarter of 2021 and roughly 6% higher in the second quarter. That robust economic recovery and pent-up demand also brought demand for meat higher, as seen in the prices paid for those products.
Higher prices have been evident year-to-date. Discussion continues about whether this is true inflation or a price bubble to burst when manufacturing and service sectors catch up with growing demand. I guess I thought that was the definition of inflation; but regardless, it is impossible to know how long this scenario will last. Some prices are beginning to moderate – lumber for example – but most consumer products seem to remain high. Big expenditures for consumers like housing, transportation and food remain elevated, too.
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