Sausage Product Statistics in the U.S.
Everyone loves to eat sausage, whether it’s by itself or crumbled up and added to a delicious recipe. You might even think you know a great deal about the different types of sausage out there. But have you ever stopped to ask yourself how much do you really know about the sausage industry itself?
In case you think there isn’t much to know, think again! Do you know how big the sausage industry is? Where is it experiencing growth? What are the latest trends and newest flavors? What are the most popular varieties out right now? We think there’s plenty to learn about when it comes to topics like these.
That’s why, today, we want to spend a little bit of time talking about them. We’ll answer these questions and more. By doing this, we hope to place your passion for sausage, and ours, in the broader context of what’s happening in the wonderful world of sausage today.
The Size of the Sausage Market in the U.S.
With the constant advent of new and exciting flavors, plus more convenient packaging and products, sausage has been enjoying a period of high sales in the past few years. Experimental flavors of sausage, as well as the more traditional sausages, alike, are experiencing growth and widespread popularity.
How do we know that? It’s simple. Data is collected from places like grocery store scanners. One of the many things these scanners can do is record every time someone purchases a particular item and then store that data for use by analysts. In this case, data analysts can access this data and see how much sausage people are buying each and every day. They can then compare this data to the numbers in past years and conclude that sausage sales are on the rise.
According to data from 2016, that year saw over one billion pounds of dinner sausage sold, which was a 0.9 percent increase from the previous statistics. The money spent on this dinner sausage was over $3.75 billion. Breakfast sausage and ham sales are also on the rise, bringing in more than $581.3 million, or an increase of 2.1 percent. In fact, when looking at statistics that show which meal most Americans choose to consume sausage with, breakfast comes in first place with 168 million Americans falling into this category.
When we look at the data collected from 2017, we can see that 247.93 million Americans used sausage of some type last year. This isn’t the only thing we can tell from that data, either. The figures go on to show that this number will likely increase to an estimated 256.78 million by the year 2020.
What Types of Sausage Are People Buying?
The data also includes some more specific information. It tells us that 153.25 million Americans chose to purchase mild or regular sausage in 2017, as opposed to spicier varieties. That number comprises well over half the total number of Americans who purchased sausage. While more data would certainly be needed to make a conclusive statement, we can hazard a guess that these mild and regular varieties are the most popular with consumers.
The data from 2017 also shows that 134.98 million Americans purchased sausages that had not been pre-cooked. In other words, these are the types of sausage that need to be cooked before eating, as opposed to the varieties that can simply be warmed up in the microwave. This means that over half the total Americans buying sausage in 2017 purchased a non-pre-cooked variety, and seems to indicate a slight national preference in that direction.
When analyzing the statistics to see what form most people buy their sausage in, we can see that 146.89 million Americans bought their sausage in the form of links, making this the most common category and indicating the popularity of the style.
While sausage is great at home, it’s even better if you don’t have to cook it yourself. And when it comes to buying sausage out-and-about, there’s no better place to buy sausage than at a baseball game. Out of all the ballparks in the country, the San Francisco Giants’ home stadium sold the most sausage, with 475,000 sales. Second place went to the St. Louis Cardinals, whose fans consumed 400,000 sausages, and third place went to the Boston Red Sox, with 327,000 sausages. In total, baseball fans bought more than 4.3 million sausages at the ballpark in 2016.
The data regarding sausage sales at other food service locations is limited, unfortunately. However, based on the information we have regarding sales of dinner, breakfast and ballpark sausage, it’s safe to say that sausage sales are going up reliably. And there’s no sign of them stopping anytime soon.
Trends and Statistics in the Sausage Market
The consumption of dinner sausage doesn’t appear to vary much across different income levels. Those with higher incomes don’t seem to eat more or less dinner sausage than those with smaller incomes. When it comes to breakfast sausage, however, the statistics indicate that families with lower incomes consume higher numbers of breakfast sausage than wealthier families.
Family size is also considered in the data, which indicates that larger families tend to eat more breakfast and dinner sausage. Furthermore, sausage consumption appears to be higher with younger families. This also means sausage consumption seems to taper off with older families and senior citizens.
Sausage purchasing habits vary slightly by geographic location, as well. Around the country, different regions consume more or less sausage than others. Los Angeles spent the most money on sausage in 2016, with their sausage sales reaching $110 million. New York was the second-largest sausage market, with sales of $102 million. Chicago claimed third place by selling $83.6 million in sausages.
Lastly, the time of year seems to affect sausage consumption and purchasing habits. Dinner sausage sales reach their peak during the summer. This makes sense, as people use these warmer months to have cookouts, barbecues and picnics with their friends and family. All of these meals usually involve meats such as sausages. Sausage sales made during the summer months account for almost one-third of the annual total.
Breakfast sausage sales, on the other hand, peak during the holiday months of November and December. This makes sense as well. These months are typically filled with families gathering together and cooking big meals as they celebrate holidays, such as Christmas and Thanksgiving. Many of these gatherings are marked by cooking traditional family meals, which involve ingredients like sausage.
The Hot Dog Industry
Hot dogs are everywhere in our country. They’re at almost every picnic and cookout you’ve ever been to, they’re readily available at any grocery store, and they’re a staple at concession stands, festivals and baseball parks across the country. They’re much more visible and mainstream than some of the more exotic sausages that are available.
While we might often talk about hot dogs and sausage like they’re two separate things, the reality is that hot dogs are a specific type of sausage. And since hot dogs are arguably one of America’s favorite types of sausage, it’s only reasonable that any discussion of America’s sausage consuming habits should also include a discussion about hot dogs and their statistics.
While it’s impossible to arrive at statistics such as the exact number of total hot dog sales, it is possible to make estimates and educated guesses. Based on these alone, we can see that the hot dog industry, like the sausage industry as a whole, is thriving.
Again, this data is collected from barcode scanners at grocery stores, supermarkets and similar places, as well as estimates taken from carnivals, restaurants and other places that don’t use barcode scanners.
The Size of the Hot Dog Market in the U.S.
According to the data, almost 1 billion pounds of hot dogs were purchased from retail stores in 2016. This equates to sales of at least $2.4 billion, and this is from retail stores alone. This number doesn’t begin to account for all the hot dog sales that took place in other venues.
As was the case with general sausages, it should come as no surprise that ballparks are a hotspot for sausage consumption during the summer months. In 2016 alone, baseball fans purchased 19.4 million hot dogs at ballparks. This number becomes even more impressive when you consider that ballparks are only open and serving food during several months of the year.
Because of numbers like these, we can clearly see it’s no accident that the top 10 cities that consumed the most hot dogs in the country are all home to major league baseball teams.
Trends and Statistics in the Hot Dog Market
Hot dog sales are currently remaining steady in the United States at grocery stores and supermarkets. They aren’t experiencing any enormous surges in popularity, but neither are the sales declining. Alternate venues, such as restaurants, festivals, airports and more, are also reporting consistently high sales. According to experts, these sales will continue to climb in future years.
One of the major driving forces behind current hot dog sales is the public’s interest in organic and natural products as well as the current enthusiasm for high-protein foods. And with many of the new styles and flavors available, hot dogs can fit these categories perfectly.
Some of the most popular new products available in the hot dog industry are actually reformulated versions of old favorites. These new versions, however, are popular for their higher protein content or their reduced fat content. Some entirely new flavors that have hit the market recently are barbeque, spicy, honey and brown sugar, Cajun and teriyaki.
Customer research reports that when it comes to choosing which products to buy, customers place a high priority on convenient packaging and clearly worded instructions on the packaging.
The highest consumers of packaged meat products such as hot dogs tend to be large households with older children, particularly located in the midwestern and southern regions of the country. Of the customers surveyed, 60 percent reported that they prefer beef varieties of hot dogs. This 60 percent was comprised largely — although not entirely — of older customers, while younger customers reported a preference for chicken or pork hot dogs.
Most of the hot dogs sold are the skinless variety. This means they’re cooked inside a casing that is removed before packaging. Some hot dogs, however, are produced inside of casings that are not removed, and that gives the hot dog a characteristic “snap” when bitten into. The majority of hot dogs are also sold in packages of eight per pound, although about 35 percent are sold in packages of ten per pound.
While hot dogs are a popular dish across the entire country, certain regions consume more hot dogs than others. The data from 2016 shows that New York City spent more on hot dogs than any other area in the country, spending a total of $101.7 million. Los Angeles was the second-largest hot dog market, spending a total of $79.3 million.
Hot dog sales are very much affected by the current season. As would be expected, sales peak during the summer months when families are getting together to have picnics, cookouts and barbeques. The weeks between Memorial Day and Labor Day compromise the majority of what we might call “hot dog season.” During this time, an estimated 38 percent of the yearly total is sold, making up about $614 million in sales.
July is officially designated as National Hot Dog month, and for good reason. A solid 10 percent of yearly hot dog sales at retail locations take place during this one month alone.
As we might expect, hot dog sales during the spring, fall and winter months are not as explosive. Hot dogs are still sold during these months, but the sales are not as large. This is also due in part to the fact that ballparks, carnivals and other such locations don’t actively sell hot dogs during the off-season, and sales are largely limited to more traditional venues.
Explore New and Exciting Varieties of Sausage Today at Premio Foods
If you love sausage, you’re probably intimately familiar with all the ordinary flavors. But there are is a whole world of new and innovative sausage styles that you might never have tried yet. Here at Premio Foods, we’d like to introduce you to a few of them.
You might have tried Italian sausage, but if you’re like most Americans you might stick to the mild version. Why not try our hot Italian sausage? Even more exciting, why not try the Italian sausage with tomato, garlic and rosemary? Why not give turkey sausage a try?
Based on the result of this data, it’s plain to see that plenty of Americans are looking for sausage options that are a little healthier. We think that’s a great idea, and that’s why we now sell chicken sausage that has 60 percent less fat than pork or beef sausage. This way, you can enjoy your favorite treat while still feeling healthy.
If you’re in the market for some delicious sausage from Premio Foods, browse our full selection of products to decide which flavor you want to try next. Once you’ve decided, don’t forget to use our store locator so you can find the Premio Foods distributor closest to you.