How does the pork market work?
The way the pork market works is similar to a pipeline. If we have 240 million pounds going into the pipeline per week, that means 240 million pounds have to come out. Also keep in mind that we have whole hogs going in so we have to have whole hogs coming out. If, on one particular week, 50 million people decide not to eat their pound of pork, we will have 50 million pounds left in the pipeline.
We still have the 240 million pounds going in, so the price on the new pork will have to be lowered to be sure it will move through the pipeline. The effect this has at a distributor level is that two sales people selling the exact same ham from the same pork company could have two different prices. One could have inventory on hand at the old higher price and the other could have inventory at the new lower price. The market changes daily depending on the supply and demand.