Pork Belly Cost

How Much Does Pork Belly Cost?

Last Updated on October 4, 2023
Written by CPA Alec Pow | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popinker

Pork belly, also known as pork midlin is a popular dish served in many restaurants. It can also be cooked at home for your family and friends to enjoy.

A variety of flavors can be added to this delicacy- it is most often braised or pan-roasted if made whole. You can also make it into bacon by slicing it, to use it for appetizers, and accenting soups.

A pork belly is actually the underside of a pig. It’s not really on their stomach, but it’s one of the most popular cuts for barbecue and bacon because they don’t have any ribs in this part.

Pork belly is never easy to find in your local grocery store and it’s not even always available on the internet. Instead, you’ll need to visit a butcher shop or order directly from a farm with fresh pork bellies if you want to make it easier to get some for yourself.

How much does pork belly cost?

Pork belly will usually cost anywhere from $2 to 6 per pound at any local butcher’s shop around you. If you’re searching for it on the internet, online suppliers or butchers might more expensive costs due to expected processing and shipping costs. 

In the end, the final price per lb of pork belly will be dependent on factors like where you buy it from, the amount you purchase, and the type of cut you go for.

For example, Marin Sun Farms has three types of pork belly for retail shoppers. The 12-14 pound variety with the skin and ribs on is $112, the 10-pound option without bones or skin can be purchased for about $90, and finally, there’s the 8-pound meat at a reduced price of $65 that has no skin and no ribs.

Springfield Farm is charging $9 per pound for smoked bacon end pieces. If you’re looking to save money, it might be worth checking out what Costco has on sale; they currently have a deal going where 11 pounds of boneless pork belly retails at about $3 per pound.

You might also like our articles about the cost of a rack of lamb, ground turkey, or venison meat.

Pork belly details

Different Types of Pork BellyPork belly is most of the time available at local meat markets and online, but it can be difficult to find the best quality.

Unsmoked and uncured pork belly is a chunk of meat near the pig’s stomach. It can be eaten with skin and ribs, or without either; it comes in many different cuts that are all uncured, unsmoked, and un-sliced, unlike bacon which usually has been cured, unfortunately hiding some natural flavors.

The meat will be sliced or uncut and sent as slabs. Cuts for two pounds of pork belly will usually be enough to serve six to 10 people, while 5-pound cuts can serve 13-20 people.

Dealers typically sell pork belly that is not processed with added hormones and antibiotics or seasoned. It’s known to be rich, flavorful meat with the perfect consistency for frying and slicing into bacon strips.

The pork belly order arrives frozen in an insulated container with ice and is typically shipped overnight. Expedited shipping ensures the product will be fresh, tasty, and safe from spoilage.

Shipping and handling costs can add up to a substantial sum, depending on the size of your order. If you reach a minimum order, most of the time you won’t be charged for the shipping fees.

Any additional expenses to consider?

Online butcher retailers and markets might charge a separate fee for shipping costs and a container to hold the pork belly.

The butcher’s hands are the determining factor in how high the pork prices are. The more work that a butcher has to do with their hands, the higher prices they will charge for their meats. For instance, if someone buys pork belly without bones or skin, then they’ll have to pay extra as opposed to buying the meat as is.

Important things to consider

Pork belly can be placed in a freezer upon arrival to keep it fresh for longer periods of time. Some supplies will remain fresh for up to six months if frozen. Make sure you ask about the estimated delivery date when ordering this product because it has to arrive in a maximum of 3-4 days to ensure it is still fresh.

Make sure that all meat is USDA-inspected. You should also ask about the butcher’s return policy for incorrect orders and damaged goods to avoid any surprises when you receive your order.

BonAppetit.com says it’s essential to purchase lean meats for the best flavor and texture, but what does that mean? For qualifying purchases, the website elaborates by saying a bright white fat and pink meat is an indicator of quality cuts.

Is there any way to spend less?

If you’re looking for pork belly at a cheaper price, check out your local farmers’ market. They may offer it at lower prices than what is available in stores. Another option to save money on meat is free shipping. If you reach the minimum order requirement, most online shops will offer free shipping for your order.

Enrolling in a CSA is one of the best ways to save money on meat purchases. You can also enroll in some membership rewards programs to get other great benefits as well.

How does inflation affect the pork belly prices in the 2023 market?

According to the data provided, inflation has had a significant impact on pork belly prices in the 2023 market, which in turn affects the prices of bacon and other pork products. 

Pork producers face higher costs for things like feed, labor, transportation, etc. This leads to higher pork production costs that get passed on as higher pork belly prices.

According to CNBC, pork belly prices rose over 100% year-to-date, from 131.59 cents per pound in January to 270.89 cents at the end of July.

The August increase in prices was attributed to an animal welfare law in California, which went into effect in July and required pigs to have at least 24 square feet of space in their enclosures for their meat to be sold in the state. Despite the August increase, consumers were still paying less for bacon than they did one year ago, with prices down 6.4% on an annual basis.

These highlighted fluctuations in pork belly prices were influenced by various factors, including supply and demand dynamics, production levels, and regulatory changes.
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