New data from the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) shows that since 2018, the sales of processed pork products, namely bacon and sausages, have steadily declined in the UK, with retail sales of bacon down by 5.6% and 64% of consumers linking such products to heart disease, high blood pressure and cancer.
According to the AHDB, consumers have been responding to media reports on the negative effects on health of processed pork, with 18% having heard about a connection between bacon and cancer and many receiving recommendations to reduce intake of processed meat.
The data shows that older consumers were more likely to cut back on products such as sausages and bacon due to concerns over effects on health, and younger families were less likely to cut back. Retired households reduced bacon by 9.4% in the past year.
The board offers various advice and suggestions to the meat industry such as to focus more on food service, where the declines are less drastic, and to consider offering bacon in salad recipes for example.