This article is sponsored content brought to you by Porkstar.
Australians are putting more and more pork on their forks, which is giving chefs an opportunity to explore the magical meat.
In 2015, pork consumption overtook beef, making it Australia’s favourite protein, behind chicken.
“Beef and lamb with three veg is no longer the standard dinner, rather chicken and pork are now our most frequently used and loved proteins,” said Australian Pork’s Mitch Edwards.
“Pork has long been the world’s most popular protein and the move towards pork here has been a long-term trend, with forecasts showing only continued consumption growth.
“There are a lot of reasons for that growth, including more adventurous diners and cooks, plus successful marketing campaigns.”
Australian Pork Limited’s food service program, PorkStar, is in its 13th year and Mitch said food service had definitely played a role in pork’s growth.
“PorkStar works with chefs to drive pork’s menu penetration, which gives people access to delicious dishes when dining out,” he said.
Where once pork was absent from many menus, or contained in just one dish, it’s now a menu must-have.
“It’s exciting to see that chefs have picked up on how versatile Australian pork is,” Mitch said.
“Pork lovers have known that for some time, but if you look around, there’s now a greater variety of cuts being used and in so many creative ways.”
Pork’s versatility is also the focus of a new consumer campaign, which aims to inspire people to try new dishes, recognising that one cut can be transformed into a number of different dishes.
“While this is a consumer campaign, I also think it’s a good reminder for chefs to have another look at their menu and think about how they can mix it up,” Mitch said.
“Of course pork roasts with crackling will always be a winner, but they can also be transformed into schnitzels, ragu or sliders.
“Some more adventurous chefs are using pork nose-to-tail, including cuts like jowl, ears and tail, so it can also be worth taking a look at a range of cuts, for example, loin, which may have fallen off the radar a little and present a different opportunity.
“We also know that the health attributes for pork fillet are resonating with consumers, and that can be handy for a lighter menu choice, or simply featured as a stunning main.”
Pork consumption is expected to continue to rise, with Australian Pork and the PorkStar program encouraging chefs to get creative with the protein and include it on their menus.
For recipe inspiration, visit porkstar.com.au