As Food Costs Rise, People Are Buying More Ramen, Hotdogs and Spam

The Seeker of Good Songs

Well-Known Member
http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gtF_r6YW589BUegKGbzv4jQP-g_AD90URO003

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Love it, hate it or laugh at it — at least it's inexpensive.
Sales of Spam — that much maligned meat — are rising as consumers are turning more to lunch meats and other lower-cost foods to extend their already stretched food budgets.
What was once cheeky, silly and the subject of a musical (as Monty Python mocked the meat in a can), is now back on the table as people turn to the once-snubbed meat as costs rise, analysts say.
Food prices are increasing faster than they've risen since 1990, at 4 percent in the U.S. last year, according to the Agriculture Department. Many staples are rising even faster, with white bread up 13 percent last year, bacon up 7 percent and peanut butter up 9 percent.
There's no sign of a slowdown. Food inflation is running at an annualized rate of 6.1 percent as of April, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The price of Spam is up too, with the average 12 oz. can costing about $2.62. That's an increase of 17 cents, or nearly 7 percent, from the same time last year. But it's not stopping sales, as the pork meat in a can seems like a good alternative to consumers.
Kimberly Quan, a stay-at-home mom of three who lives just outside San Francisco, has been feeding her family more Spam in the last six months as she tries to make her food budget go further.
She cooks meals like Spam fried rice and Spam sandwiches two or three times a month, up from once a month previously.
Pulling Spam from the shelf prevents last-minute grocery store trips and overspending, said Quan, 38, of Pleasanton, Calif.
"It's canned meat and it's in the cupboard and if everything else is gone from the fridge, it's there," she said.
Spam's maker, Hormel Foods Corp., reported last week that it saw strong sales of Spam in the second quarter, helping push up its profits 14 percent. According to sales information coming from Hormel, provided by The Nielsen Co., Spam sales were up 10.6 percent in the 12-week period ending May 3, compared to last year. In the last 24 weeks, sales were up nearly 9 percent.
The Austin, Minn.-based company, also known for the Jennie-O Turkey Store, has embarked on its first national advertising campaign for the 71-year-old brand in several years. They've credited the sales increase to that, along with new products like individually packaged "Spam Singles" slices. Also helping sales, executives said in an earnings conference call, was the fact that people looking to save money are skipping restaurant meals and eating more at home.
Spam sales are reaching across all spectrums, young and old and rich and poor, said Swen Neufeldt, Hormel's group product manager for the area that includes Spam. Many of the eaters are new to Spam, which was created in 1937 and gained fame as the meat that fed Allied troops during World War II.
"We have significantly increased our household penetration," Neufeldt said. "I think it's a lot of folks that are coming into the brand perhaps for the first time and coming back to the brand."
Hormel began its national advertising campaign, including print and television, for Spam in January. Neufeldt said such campaigns are planned in advance and it wasn't tied to perceived weakness in the economy.
Consumers are quick to realize that meats like Spam and other processed foods can be substituted for costlier cuts as a way of controlling costs, said Marcia Mogelonsky, senior research analyst with Mintel International in Chicago.
These products have protein and decent nutritional value, and they provide some variety to consumers who may be bored because they're eating more at home, she said.
"They might not have Spam at every single meal, but they might supplement a couple of meals," she said.
Consumers are also using more coupons and paying more attention to sales, doing anything they can to save money, she said. You may be able to cut back on your driving due to high gas prices, but you're not going to stop eating because of high food prices, she said.
Quan just bought a couple more cans of Spam on sale and some ramen, the instant noodle dish long a staple on college campuses. Her food and gas budgets are together, so she's had to cut back on food spending while the cost of gas increases. Her favorite Spam meal? Spam and macaroni and cheese. She doesn't skimp on nutrition, though. Quan serves her husband and three children — ranging in age from 4 to 11 — organic vegetables like salads, broccoli and carrots.
"It balances out," she said.
Other companies are seeing similar boosts in their lunch meats. Kraft Foods Inc. reported last month that subsidiary Oscar Mayer, which makes hot dogs, bacon and cold cuts, saw double-digit revenue growth in the previous quarter in its Deli Fresh cold cuts. The company, based in Madison, Wis., has recently introduced new products including family sized deli-meat packs and deli carved, which offers thicker slices of meat.
April Smith has been changing the way she feeds her family in Broken Arrow, Okla., to keep up with rising costs. This summer the 33-year-old administrative assistant will feed her two boys, ages 11 and 8, more ramen for lunch. Normally they eat the noodle soup on Saturdays, but since ramen costs about a dime per pack, they'll get it twice a week. Smith says she'll throw in some leftover frozen vegetables to make it more nutritious.
"Since it's cheap and easy, I figure why not let them eat it twice a week instead of once a week," Smith said.
 
Aren't these 3 pretty much the staples of the Hawaiian diet already?

Spammusubi1011.jpg

Yep, that's Spam sushi. :D :sick:
 

Musley

wild and free
Sp prices are rising in the US as well. I bet they still aren't having to pay £1.14 a litre for petrol though.
 

The Seeker of Good Songs

Well-Known Member
""Since it's cheap and easy, I figure why not let them eat it twice a week instead of once a week," Smith said."

because it has no nutritional value and is high in sodium.
 

PregnantForTheLastTime

Hideous trait.
And fat, too. How about going and buying a huge bag of brown rice for $5 or $6 and cooking that for them? Add a few bullion cubes if you must.

I swear I spend far less on groceries now than when I was eating meat. I mostly just buy fresh vegetables and fruit, uncooked rice and pasta, things like that, instead of premade or "quick" food. The only vegetables I buy frozen are peas and corn. Most things in cans and boxes make my eyes pop out when I see how much sodium is in them. They scare me.

I've noticed that the price difference between organic and regular produce is smaller than it used to be. I thought the prices on organic things have dropped, but now I wonder if the price of regular things has just increased. I think it's both, actually. In any case, I'm now also buying almost all organic produce, which makes me feel good too.

We have now, two generations of people who don't really know how to cook because they've been using boxes and cans and mixes their whole lives.
 

mozmic_dancer

One of the Good Guys
Thank you for this article.

I've personally noticed two outstanding trends in my area; one being people frequeting Goodwill stores and other second-hand shops.

The other is people cashing in their change at banks at those change machines that count all your loose change and give a receipt for bills. One bank in New York had eight people in line at one of those things.

Incredible.
 

PregnantForTheLastTime

Hideous trait.
Thank you for this article.

I've personally noticed two outstanding trends in my area; one being people frequeting Goodwill stores and other second-hand shops.

The other is people cashing in their change at banks at those change machines that count all your loose change and give a receipt for bills. One bank in New York had eight people in line at one of those things.

Incredible.

Not so incredible. Did you know that one of those big water-fountain bottles can hold a few thousand dollars in change? We're about to find out the exact total. Might as well--I think there are seven or eight years worth of change in there.

So this is good--maybe people will start taking recycling seriously as a way of improving life overall. And perhaps what this society needs is a good depression to reshift our priorities. We'll find out...
 

Hellie

Lost
They won't think it economical when they all get bowel cancer.
 

Emotional Guide Dog

Chairman Of The Bored
They won't think it economical when they all get bowel cancer.

True. But on the other hand they'll be glad that they went through life not listening to every fricken scare story created by the press.
Surely they're going to run out of things that they can blame for cancer before long.
'Don't smoke, don't drink too many alcohol units, don't eat processed meat, don't drive fast, don't drive at all, don't run with scissors, do your homework, go to bed etc etc etc.' If we didn't do anything that was supposedly bad for us, we may as well be dead already.

Now gimme that spam fritter, dip it in a fried egg & then pour me a four unit vodka to go with this cigar. Oh... and kick a kitten.
 

Cassius

New Member
When my brother and I were little we were pretty poor and at lots of Ramen and hotdogs. Sometimes we'd just eat cereal. :sick::sick::sick:

I can understand not having much money and trying to feed your kids what you can. Unfortunately, nutrition sometimes takes a back seat.

However, a think nowadays a big problem is mostly conveniency. People don't want to cook anymore. They want to buy a boxed, processed meal and pop it in the oven for half an hour. I'm not going to say I never do that, but I try to keep it to a minimuim. We've cursed ourselves with conveniency.
 

The Seeker of Good Songs

Well-Known Member
When my brother and I were little we were pretty poor and at lots of Ramen and hotdogs. Sometimes we'd just eat cereal. :sick::sick::sick:

I can understand not having much money and trying to feed your kids what you can. Unfortunately, nutrition sometimes takes a back seat.

However, a think nowadays a big problem is mostly conveniency. People don't want to cook anymore. They want to buy a boxed, processed meal and pop it in the oven for half an hour. I'm not going to say I never do that, but I try to keep it to a minimuim. We've cursed ourselves with conveniency.

That is another reason people complain so much about not having any money.
It cost so much more for the pre-boxed ready to eat meals.

"Back in my day" we had meat and potatoes for nearly every meal. My parents were not rich. My dad was just a regular factory worker. My mom was a mom at home. But she baked bread, did canning, she "darned" the holes in our socks. It seems like a different world now. Why would you repair a sock? You can buy a bag of 10 pairs for a few dollars at Costco. But it cost her nothing to fix it. I remember her putting an old light bulb into the sock to form the heel and using the needle and thread.
My dad knew someone who was a potato farmer. At harvest time he would buy a literal ton of potatoes - a pickup truck loaded with sacks of potatoes. We had an actual cellar room with just the potatoes.

She hung the laundry out on the line to dry, summer and winter. The only time she used the dryer was when it was rainy and she couldn't postpone the laundry to another day.

She used an old ringer washer for the clothes. She hated when we got a new "automatic" one. She said it took her all day to do laundry then because she had to wait for all the cycles.
 

iamkali62

New Member
Thank you for this article.

I've personally noticed two outstanding trends in my area; one being people frequeting Goodwill stores and other second-hand shops.

The other is people cashing in their change at banks at those change machines that count all your loose change and give a receipt for bills. One bank in New York had eight people in line at one of those things.

Incredible.

Well, I usually have piles of change everywhere, and I get my biggest wallet and dump all the change in there, and go to the Coinstar machine (it's inside my grocery store.) I'm not ashamed to use them. Money is money!
 

bysshe

human bean
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Cassius

New Member
That is another reason people complain so much about not having any money.
It cost so much more for the pre-boxed ready to eat meals.

"Back in my day" we had meat and potatoes for nearly every meal. My parents were not rich. My dad was just a regular factory worker. My mom was a mom at home. But she baked bread, did canning, she "darned" the holes in our socks. It seems like a different world now. Why would you repair a sock? You can buy a bag of 10 pairs for a few dollars at Costco. But it cost her nothing to fix it. I remember her putting an old light bulb into the sock to form the heel and using the needle and thread.
My dad knew someone who was a potato farmer. At harvest time he would buy a literal ton of potatoes - a pickup truck loaded with sacks of potatoes. We had an actual cellar room with just the potatoes.

She hung the laundry out on the line to dry, summer and winter. The only time she used the dryer was when it was rainy and she couldn't postpone the laundry to another day.

She used an old ringer washer for the clothes. She hated when we got a new "automatic" one. She said it took her all day to do laundry then because she had to wait for all the cycles.

Your mom sounds like a pretty smart lady. :)

My mom did try, though. We were always fed, never hungry. She did the best she could in that area.

Plus, it's made me appreciate what I have now a whole lot more.
 

neonmad

一日三秋 (yírìsānqiū)
Another reason to go veggie.
Yes; not only is SPAM...not enticing...but we would have a lot more food if we just ate our grains first hand!

They won't think it economical when they all get bowel cancer.
...or lung cancer:( It's exactly the people who can't go in for screenings, too...

True. But on the other hand they'll be glad that they went through life not listening to every fricken scare story created by the press.
Surely they're going to run out of things that they can blame for cancer before long.
'Don't smoke, don't drink too many alcohol units, don't eat processed meat, don't drive fast, don't drive at all, don't run with scissors, do your homework, go to bed etc etc etc.' If we didn't do anything that was supposedly bad for us, we may as well be dead already.

Now gimme that spam fritter, dip it in a fried egg & then pour me a four unit vodka to go with this cigar. Oh... and kick a kitten.
:sleeping:

Meat greatly increases peoples' risk for colon polyp formation, and red meat & processed meat increase peoples' risk of getting colorectal, lung and (for men, of course) prostate cancer.
But I'm still going to do the bad things that don't kill animals and contribute to global pollution and starvation.;)
Incidentally,
if people are changing food habits due to expense, they're not really exerting freedom of choice


Btw, I come from a ramen family, haha.
 

Emotional Guide Dog

Chairman Of The Bored
Yes; not only is SPAM...not enticing...but we would have a lot more food if we just ate our grains first hand!

...or lung cancer:( It's exactly the people who can't go in for screenings, too...

:sleeping:

Meat greatly increases peoples' risk for colon polyp formation, and red meat & processed meat increase peoples' risk of getting colorectal, lung and (for men, of course) prostate cancer.
But I'm still going to do the bad things that don't kill animals and contribute to global pollution and starvation.;)
Incidentally,
if people are changing food habits due to expense, they're not really exerting freedom of choice

Yes yes yes yes, blah blah blah, :sleeping. It's the latest Vegetarianism For Idiots newsletter isn't it? Meat causes global warming. What a load of bollocks.
 
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