THE pork shortage has hit Cranbourne as Victorian pork suppliers fail to keep up with demand after about 9000 pigs were lost to a recent bush fire that devastated a South Australian piggery.
Luke Nagel, the manager of Cranbourne’s Kelly’s Meats for the past eight years, said concerns of a pork shortage always heat up around Christmas time but this year “everyone’s screaming”.
“It’s been a horror year with meat prices rising, beef doubling in the past six months due to tariffs and no one expected this big pork shortage to top off the year,” Mr Nagel said.
“The bushfire killed a lot of pigs at a major breeder that supplies Victoria with pork and we are definitely feeling it.
“We placed an order for 10 pigs and were only sent two pigs because the suppliers can’t meet everyone’s orders but they want to share what they’ve got around,” he said.
Mr Nagel said he could tell times were tough when butchers in the “pork mecca” of Springvale were turning away customers.
“We’ve heard even Springvale butchers, who are renowned for their pork supply, can’t get enough pigs and a lot of restaurants go there directly,” he said.
Mr Nagel said Cranbourne residents will have to pre-order to ensure they get some pork on their fork at a reasonable price over the festive season.
“We’ve put away some ham for Christmas throughout the year and we make our own ham but shoppers can’t expect to see pork chops in the window,” he said.
“There won’t be big butcher windows on display with legs of ham this year because we haven’t got the stock.”
Mr Nagel said shoppers would miss out if they didn’t order their Christmas pork in the next two weeks.
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