For those who think bacon --as a frenzied food fad --has jumped the shark, think again.
Beyond it being salty and delicious, bacon is still a huge moneymaker for food purveyors for three big reasons.
According to Bloomberg, the price of pork has plummeted 45 percent in the last year. This makes it cheaper than ever to use. Data Essential reported that 68 percent of restaurants in the U.S. have bacon somewhere on the menu—a dramatic rise from previous years.
Also, bacon is a universally versatile ingredient. The strips can be used as toppings for burgers; chopped up pieces as an addition to otherwise healthy kale salads; it can be pickled, fried, baked, even candied—if you can dream it, a chef has probably done it with bacon. Bloomberg says the versatility aspect is a huge sell for millennials who are always looking for new ways to enjoy food.
Even vegans want bacon. Maybe. Burger chain Fatburger serves up a veggie patty topped with crispy bacon strips they call “The Hypocrite.”
The third reason for bacon’s meteoric rise is due to the popularity of meat-friendly diets like paleo. Though lean, organic meats are preferred, bacon certainly isn’t off the menu for those following this low-refined sugar, high-protein diet that harkens back to man’s most primal dietary needs.
While restaurants may be paying less for pork products, those savings are not being passed onto the consumer. We’re still paying the same when we dine out—which is more than we cook at home now. So for now, it looks like the bacon boom is here to stay.