Source - The meat market just missed another holiday: March Madness.
The NCAA basketball tournament is the second of two annual festivals for chicken wings (the first is the Super Bowl). Wing prices and production run in predictable cycles each year ramping up for the NFL playoffs and championship game in the beginning of February, then again for college basketball's frenzied tournament a month and a half later. ...
But with the country locked down because of the spread of the novel coronavirus, and the NCAA tournament canceled, a whole bunch of wings are lying around, and now they've flooded the market.
"That is fact," said Will Sawyer, lead animal protein economist at CoBank. "That is real."
Wings, the most expensive part of the bird, haven't been this cheap since September 2011, according to Agriculture Department data. They sold for close to $2 per pound the weekend of the Super Bowl. Now, they sell for just over half of that: $1.09 per pound. ...
Poultry producers sold 1.24 million pounds of wings the week the tournament was scheduled to start. Last week, they sold barely 433,000 pounds.
"Those are millions of pounds of wings that people don't eat," said Erik Oosterwijk, president of Fells Point Wholesale Meats in Baltimore.
I like to think that in these perilous times, all decent people with any sort of a sense of duty are looking for ways to do their part. And I believe I just found mine. A chance for Jerry, Writer of Massachusetts, to show his quality.
I can't treat patients, keep the peace or care for the needy. But when you need surplus, underpriced chicken wings consumed in massive quantities, I'm your guy. As a matter of fact, while I'm not a leading animal protein economist like Will Sawyer, but I am an expert in the field. If this problem becomes too great, if say the Baltimore area wholesale meat industry or the White House decides to convene a Surplus Chicken Wings Task Force, I should be its Deborah Birx.
I don't like to brag, but I will when its absolutely necessary. When my country needs me. I have been blessed with one talent in this world: The ability to cook meats to perfection. Give me any cut of any kind of animal protein, and I can cook it with any heat source you've got. Gas grill. Charcoal. Oven. Gas burner. Electric. Smoker. Dorm room hotplate. Easy Bake Oven. Name it. Hand me that cut in the butcher paper, let me grab my tongs and GTFO of my way and let me work magic.
Sincerest sympathies to the farmers, the poultry companies and the restaurants who have lost a ton of revenue in this time. Not to mention the chickens who gave their all. But here's an opportunity for the rest of us to step up and help them out. To flatten the curve of their surplus and let them know their efforts were not in vain. Eat wings everybody. For America.