No not Francis Bacon the English philosopher…….
Todays’s Post is by Eli Razov, SafeSourcing Account Manger.
No not Francis Bacon the English philosopher, but that wonderful meat we all love. Don’t worry we kept the treat, but a lot of things have changed. Back in 2011, the CME decided to remove the Pork Belly from the trade floor because of its volatility and a few other reasons. What does that mean? Is this the end of pork trade? Where do I buy a Pig?
Let’s start at the beginning. Bacon is one of the oldest cuts of meat, going back to around 1500 B.C. It has been used in multiple countries and cultures. Around the 16th century it was the European peasant food go-to because it is easy to produce and relatively cheap. This also goes for us Americans as well; we haven’t always loved or claimed this glorious breakfast staple as we do today. It wasn’t really until the mid to later 1900’s that we found our love. In 1961 seeing the rise of demand the CME allowed Pork Bellies to be traded and that’s where we begin. The “pork belly contract” each consisting of 40,000 lbs of frozen trimmed bellies is how the CME decided to keep track of reserves. Ever since it rolled across that ticker, pork bellies have been a dramatic rollercoaster ride for investors. Everything from weather, feed, disease, other countries demands and even speculation have controlled and dictated this commodity. There have been many jokes made about the pork belly trade as well as movie appearances like in “Trading Places”. But like all good things, this too has come to an end. The country’s demand for pork bellies grew exponentially over the years and in 2010 the CME monitored warehouses were about 73 percent smaller than the previous year. This as we know is not good for most investors, seeing this drastic of a change means prices will skyrocket, but also mean the product can become extremely scarce. Well that was back when we had to freeze and keep in warehouses. But now most of what we consume is all fresh. So in 2011 the CME decided to remove the Pork Belly from the commodity trade.
Never fear, bacon is not going anywhere. In fact, we come up with new ways to use it every day. The CME has had “Lean Hog Futures” for many years, which are now the new pork bellies just under the same umbrella. The trade is going strong and our love for the succulent snack is ever growing. And if you are a true bacon lover, and maybe even dabble in investments, you can always go over to the CME website and put some stock in the things we love.
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