Americans’ love affair with bacon isn’t showing any signs of fading. According to new research from The NPD Group, U.S. consumers ate about 1.1 billion servings of bacon in the year ending April 2014, a year-over-over increase of 6 percent.
Pork bacon holds the bulk share of units and dollar volume shipped to restaurants and other foodservice outlets, but other varieties, such as beef, chicken, duck and turkey, are capturing more attention, according to NPD’s SupplyTrack.
The pork bacon category grew 2.3 percent during the year, despite higher pork prices. Turkey and chicken bacon experienced single-digit unit growth in the year ending April 2014 period while beef bacon units increased by double-digits and duck by triple-digits.
“The growth in bacon consumption at foodservice outlets is reflected in the dollar and unit growth in bacon shipments from the broadline foodservice distributors,” NPD VP Annie Roberts said in a news release. “Among the key drivers of bacon unit growth are more consumers visiting restaurants for breakfast, and new and innovative bacon menu offerings, including new types of bacon.”
Quick-service and family dining restaurants represent the largest dollar and unit share of the bacon category, and these two channels increased units and dollar volume shipped compared to a year ago. Units and dollars shipped to some non-commercial foodservice outlets, such as preschools and daycare centers, increased by double-digits.