Pig meat, including pork, bacon, sausages and ham, is the most-consumed red meat in the UK out-of-home market, at 68.7 percent of all red meat servings, according to new figures from NPD Group/Crest.
Pig meat also experienced the greatest increase in servings in 2011 compared with 2010 numbers, according to the data. The figures show total pig meat servings increased by 8.1. In the main this growth was driven by bacon, which saw servings grow by 29.5 percent, and sausages, which grew by 21.3 percent. Ham has also moved up the charts, by 11.7 percent, and pork saw an increase of 4.6 percent.
“Quality-assured bacon is a fantastic ingredient for all types of menus," said British Pig Exchange foodservice trade manager Tony Goodger. "It’s hugely versatile and delivers a punch of flavor to dishes. Sausages made from quality-assured pork also continue to be one of the most popular foods eaten out of home, appealing to both adults and children alike. Both are relatively low-cost proteins and, in the current climate when every penny counts, chefs are clearly recognizing their profit potential."
The industry is starting to see more chefs buying whole pig carcasses and experimenting with a wider range of cuts due to the meat's cost-effectiveness, according to Goodger.