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- At its peak under Biden, the price of bacon rose by 30%, not the 400% that it would be if Trump’s "five times" comment was correct.
- After a subsequent decline in price, the increase during Biden’s presidency now stands at 11.5%. Today’s level is just 2% higher than its peak under Trump.
- An expert told PolitiFact that "fluctuations in bacon or pork prices in general have nothing to do with who is president."
"Things are not going, right now, very well for the consumer. Bacon is up five times," Trump said Sept. 17.
Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows that bacon’s price rose 30% from January 2021, the month Biden took office, to November 2022. It did not go up five times, which would have been a 400% increase.
Also, prices have declined since that November 2022 peak. Today, the price of bacon is 11.5% higher than it was in January 2021.
Today’s bacon price is only 2% higher than it was at its peak during Trump’s presidency, in September 2017.
In 2021 and 2022, "we saw significant inflationary pressures in the economy and increased consumer spending on food," said David L. Ortega, an associate professor in Michigan State University's Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics. "High grain prices during that time made it more costly to raise hogs. All of this contributed to increased prices for pork products, and other foods."
Joseph Balagtas, an agricultural economist at Purdue University agreed.
"The story of 2021 was a big bounceback in food service activity, from more people eating in restaurants," he said. "This caught packers of pork, beef, and chicken off guard after the COVID-19-related restaurant closures of 2020. The story since Fall 2022 is consumers have spent their stimulus funds, so there's decreased demand for pork."
Regardless, Ortega said, "fluctuations in bacon or pork prices in general have nothing to do with who is president."
Food prices have risen during Biden’s presidency, climbing about 19% from January 2021 to August 2023.
Trump’s campaign did not respond to inquiries from PolitiFact.
Trump said the price of "bacon is up five times" under Biden.
Not so. At its peak under Biden, the price of bacon rose by 30%, and after a subsequent price decline, the increase during his presidency now stands at 11.5%. Today’s level is 2% higher than its peak under Trump.
Meanwhile, an expert told PolitiFact that such pork price fluctuations are not related to who is president.
We rate the statement False.
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, "Average Price: Bacon, Sliced (Cost per Pound/453.6 Grams) in U.S. City Average, accessed Sept. 18, 2023
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, "Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers: Food in U.S. City Average," accessed Sept. 18, 2023
Email interview with David L. Ortega, associate professor in Michigan State University's Department of Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics, Sept. 18, 2023
Email interview with Joseph Balagtas, agricultural economist at Purdue University, Sept. 18, 2023
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