Why is Beef Jerky So Expensive?


You’re looking for a new snack to try and you’ve seen beef jerky in the store. You’re curious about why it’s so expensive, so you do some research. Here are some reasons why beef jerky can be a costly snack.

The cost of beef is one reason why jerky is expensive. Beef is a costly meat to produce, so the price of beef jerky reflects that. The cost of processing and packaging the jerky is another contributing factor. It takes time and effort to make jerky, and that costs money. Additionally, shipping and marketing beef jerky can be expensive. It’s a perishable item, so it needs to be transported and displayed properly if stores want to sell it. And finally, beef jerky is considered a luxury item, so retailers often charge a higher price for it.

The Cost of Beef

The cost of beef is important because it affects the price of beef jerky. The higher the cost of beef, the more expensive beef jerky will be. This is because the cost of producing beef jerky includes the cost of the beef itself. If the price of beef rises, so does the price of beef jerky.

There are many factors that contribute to the cost of beef. The price of feed, the cost of raising cattle, and labor costs all play a role. Additionally, the demand for beef is high, so the price of beef often rises when there is a shortage. All of these factors affect the price of beef jerky and contribute to its high cost.

The Cost of Processing Beef

In order to make beef jerky, the beef needs to be processed. This involves cutting the meat into thin strips, marinating it in spices and flavorings, and then drying it out. All of this takes time and money, which is why the cost of processing beef is a factor in the price of beef jerky.

Processing beef is a labor-intensive process, and it requires special equipment. There are many steps involved in making jerky, and each one takes time and effort. It’s a process that can’t be rushed, which is why the cost of processing beef is high.

The Cost of Packaging Beef Jerky

In order to sell beef jerky, it needs to be packaged properly. This means putting the jerky in a container that will protect it from moisture and spoilage. It also involves labeling the package with information about the product. All of this costs money, which is why the cost of packaging beef jerky is a factor in the price of the snack.

Packaging is important for two reasons. First, it protects the jerky from moisture and spoilage, which can cause it to spoil quickly. Second, it provides information about the product to consumers. This includes the name of the product, the ingredients, the weight of the package, and the nutrition information. All of this costs money, so the cost of packaging beef jerky contributes to its high price.

The Cost of Shipping Beef Jerky

Shipping beef jerky can be expensive because it’s a perishable item. If stores want to sell it, they need to ship it from the processing plant to the store in a timely manner. This often requires refrigerated trucks, which cost money to rent.

Additionally, the store needs to have enough space to display the beef jerky. It can’t be stored in the back room where it’s dark and humid, because that will make it spoil. Jerky also needs to be displayed near the checkout counter so customers can see it. This takes up space and costs money.

The Cost of Marketing Beef Jerky

Marketing beef jerky is important because it helps to create awareness for the product. It also helps to create a demand for the product, which can lead to higher sales. However, marketing beef jerky can be expensive.

There are many different ways to market beef jerky. Stores can run ads in newspapers and magazines, they can place flyers in the store, and they can create displays for the product. All of this costs money, which is why the cost of marketing beef jerky contributes to its high price.

The Cost of Taxes

Finally, the cost of taxes played a role in the high price of beef jerky. This is because the government charges taxes on many different products, including beef jerky. These taxes help to pay for important services, such as education and healthcare. However, they also contribute to the high cost of beef jerky.

Profit Margins For Beef Jerky Manufacturers

Although the cost of beef jerky is high, manufacturers still make a profit on the product. This is because the ingredients are expensive, but the markup on the product is high. For example, a package of beef jerky that costs $10 to produce can be sold for $20 in stores. This allows manufacturers to make a profit while still keeping the price of the product high.

The high price of beef jerky can be attributed to the cost of processing beef, packaging beef jerky, shipping beef jerky, marketing beef jerky, and taxes. However, manufacturers still make a profit on the product because the ingredients are expensive but the markup is high.

Is There Anything You Can Do To Make Beef Jerky More Affordable?

Well, you could try making it at home. Be sure to check out our homemade beef jerky recipe; it’s a relatively easy snack to prepare. You could also buy it in bulk, which can save you some money. Or if you’re really looking to save, you could try lower-cost meat like turkey or chicken jerky.


Beef jerky is expensive because it’s a luxury item. It requires special equipment and labor-intensive processing, which drives up the cost of production. The high price of beef jerky also contributes to the cost of shipping, packaging, and marketing the product. Finally, taxes play a role in the high price of this snack.

Although manufacturers make a profit on beef jerky, it’s still a costly item for consumers to purchase.

Whatever your reasons for wanting to know why beef jerky is so expensive, now you have a better understanding of the factors that contribute to its high price.

Thanks for reading!

Bobby Johnson

When he's not writing about barbecue, you can find Bobby smoking meat for friends and family. He's been a backyard pitmaster for roughly half his life, and has worked with nearly every cut of meat. Not everyone has a hands-on guide to teach them BBQ, but that's what Bobby hopes to do with Electric Smoker HQ. He wants to help people create amazing food that they can be proud of.