From high to low-percent lean, Chuck to Round, patty to meatball and everything in between, Ground Beef is beef’s most versatile item. Retailers sell multiple forms, pack sizes and types to meet a plethora of consumer needs and occasions – from a dinner of one to a celebration for many. Fitting most any appliance, cooking method, or cuisine type, Ground Beef is often quick and convenient, as well. No wonder it accounted for 40% of dollar sales and fully half of last year’s pound sales.1 That said, there’s much to uncover in the realm of retail Ground Beef sales. So, let’s dive in.
First, Ground Beef’s share of total retail meat department beef pound sales hovers around 50%.2 While tight supplies and higher prices drove this share to 52% in 2015, the more typical share since 2012 has been in the 49-50% range. As noted previously, 2018 Ground Beef sales were particularly robust, driving its share from 49% to 50% compared to the prior year, although this enthusiasm tapered somewhat by year-end (Chart 1).
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