Welcome back to the latest installment of the FRM blog on all things meat. Today we will shift our focus to a headline I saw likely due to Facebook watching my every move, noting every keystroke, and specifically targeting me. All I have been getting on FB and IG are targeted meat ads for some reason. That conversation though is for a different blog where I type with a tinfoil hat on, this one is about what the LA Times are dubbing “Bacon Gate” and the scarcity of bacon to come. So today we will walk through why bacon could become scarce, what effects that could have, and of course, how Front Row Meats is already miles ahead of this.
So what is causing this scare? Well, back in 2018 Californians passed Proposition 12 aka The Farm Animal Confinement Proposition with overwhelming support. What it boils down to is the fact that massive meat producers pack their farms with animals so tight, a lot of the animals can’t even lay down. Most are kept in tiny little cages. See the photos of what a mass producing hog farm looks like here:
Photo: Pigs confined in a mass producing hog farm.
So this proposition is meant to stop this from happening and give these animals just a little more space to live just a little bit more comfortably.
Now the law passed in 2018 and set to go into effect in January 2022, so you are probably thinking “Right, seems like a fixable issue, there shouldn't be any surprises for farmers, they have plenty of time to fix it.” WRONG. A recent study from the Associated Press estimates only about 4% of commercial hog producers are in compliance. Four Percent.
So what does this mean for California? Well, currently we use about 15% of America's total pork supply so things are looking bad for everyone involved. This is a market that suppliers cannot afford to lose, or it could spiral the entire industry. I’d like to think it could become the next prohibition, where you may be going to pork parties that you have to enter with a secret password, before entering through a closet somewhere. But what is more likely to happen is that the price of Bacon will rocket up, and not just for California but for America too. The retrofitting and decrease in the amount of hogs per farm will cost a ton of money and that will likely be felt by every state in the country.
Don’t start hoarding bacon just yet though. Thankfully Front Row Meats has been ahead of this from the start. FRM only sources from local farmers who use sustainable farming practices to raise their animals. The hogs that FRM use roam pasture fields and are not locked in some tiny little cages until they become literal bacon. See the difference here:
Photo: Typical environment of sustainably raised and humanely handled pigs.
Front Row meats is a perfect example of how the industry should run. So yes it’s possible the Rhonsonvilles of Bacon may be in trouble, but Front Row Meats is not. In fact we have just added a free pound of bacon to every Meat Club level we have.
So let me ask you something, do you know where your meat comes from?
McFetridge , S. (2021, August 2). Bacon may disappear in California as Pig rules take effect. Los Angeles Times. https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2021-08-01/bacon-may-disappear-in-california-as-pig-rules-take-effect.
Press, A. (2021, August 2). Bacon may soon disappear in one state after new rules take effect. Fox 8 Cleveland WJW. https://fox8.com/news/bacon-may-disappear-in-california-as-pig-rules-take-effect/.
Ray, J. (2021, August 5). Bacongate: How a new law may affect breakfast plates in California. Los Angeles Times. https://www.latimes.com/california/newsletter/2021-08-05/bacon-california-pig-law-essential-california.
Tayeb, Z. (2021, August 1). California restaurant owners Fear Bacon may become scarce - or even disappear - as NEW animal-welfare rules take affect, reports say. Business Insider. https://www.businessinsider.com/bacon-restaurants-may-disappear-california-animal-welfare-law-reports-2021-8.