Because we're cooking so much at home, Ball writes, there has been "a big jump in demand for the cheap cuts of meat — most notably the bits we use to make supermarket mince. At the same time, the stuff that's usually much more expensive, like the fancy steak cuts, has a big drop in demand."
The problem? You can't slaughter half a cow, or only the cheap bits of one. Normally, the different prices and demand for different cuts balances out – but right now it doesn't. Hence: carcass imbalance. To get the cheap mince we want, we're creating a huge steak stockpile.
The pork industry "seems to have experienced the hardest hit," reports Drovers, an American beef industry magazine. "The sudden decline in the food service industry has plummeted the value of pork, which gets a large portion of its price boost from restaurants. Bacon, bellies, and other premium pork products have plummeted in value, with bellies trading below $0.40 per pound and retail bacon reaching $2 per pound or less." Additionally, "The loss of the food service demand has caused beef middle meats (rib and loin cuts) to drop to their lowest price in a decade."
The whole thing is creating a major "ruckus," Ball agrees. As Nick Allen, the CEO of the British Meat Processors Association, told The Grocer, "There is plenty of food to go around but, in order for the system to keep working, we need to maintain the mechanisms (like carcase balance) that allow it to function properly." Read more via Ball here. Jeva Lange
Pork-loving Chipotle fans, fear not: The beloved fast-casual Mexican chain is looking for ways to supplement its carnitas shortage. Starting today in Kansas City, Missouri, Chipotle is testing chorizo on its menus as the lack of pork that meets its standard of "responsibly raised" has rendered many locations unable to offer carnitas.
"I've been beating the drum for five years," Chipotle corporate chef Nate Appleman told the Kansas City Star of adding chorizo to the menus. Appleman's chorizo combines pork and chicken to lighten up the sausage and cut down the grease, but he assures eaters: "This is a full-flavored chorizo."
As of now, chorizo will only grace the menus of the 33 Chipotle locations in Kansas City as the company tests how it is received. But if you find yourself in northwestern Missouri today with $7 to spare, head over for a burrito and help make history. Kimberly Alters
The brand describes the drink as "ice-cold creaminess swirled with our signature strawberry puree and a crunchy layer of cookie crumble," topped with "cheesecake-inspired whipped cream, swirls of strawberry sauce and a few shakes of more cookie crumbles."
Not everyone is happy about the new offering, though — one Reddit user posted a photo of the syrup Starbucks allegedly uses in the drinks, which is unfortunately named "cheese" syrup. Meghan DeMaria