Filet mignon bounces back from record low coronavirus price
Coronavirus closes major pork processor, creates worries for US meat supply
Smithfield Foods shut its South Dakota plant after several employees tested positive for coronavirus. FOX Business’ Jackie DeAngelis with more.
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High-end meat prices, which plummeted to record lows in March, have since rebounded by nearly 50 percent as a fresh round of panic buying strengthens shoppers' appetites.
The economic shutdown intended to curb the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic initially dragged prices down 49 percent to the lowest level since at least 1993 by destroying demand from restaurants, which are typically the largest buyers of premium meat cuts such as filet mignon, Gary Morrison, vice president and boxed beef reporter for Urner Barry, told FOX Business.
In the week through March 20, when shutdowns began hitting major U.S. markets, average prices fell nearly 9 percent to $8.55 a pound, Morrison said. Over the next month, they dropped another 39 percent to an all-time low of $5.23 a pound.
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A "v-shaped" recovery in prices, however, began in April, driven in part by the shrinkage of supply as some processing plants shuttered.
"This has forced another round of concern from meat buyers so they are trying to get their hands on any product they can," Morrison said. "Now, throw in the fact that some states are starting to lift some restrictions, with restaurants starting to open, there is additional demand competing for the tight supplies."