When you hear the name Spalding, you might immediately think of sports equipment like basketballs and baseball gloves. But did you know that Spalding also makes bacon?
Yes, you read that right – bacon.
However, not everyone seems to be a fan of this particular product. In fact, one online reviewer went as far as to call it the “worst bacon on earth.”
So, who exactly makes Spalding bacon? Let’s take a closer look at the history of this company and how they got into the bacon business.
Who Makes Spalding Bacon?
Spalding Sports Worldwide is a privately held firm based in Tampa, Florida. The company was founded in 1876 by a man named Albert Spalding, who was a pitcher and manager of a baseball team in Chicago. Spalding initially standardized early baseballs and developed the modern baseball bat with the bulge at its apex. Over time, the company expanded into other areas of sports equipment, including basketballs, golf clubs, and even bicycles.
In the early 1900s, Spalding began selling dumbbells, Indian clubs, and punch bags for boxing. By 1916, the company was selling a wide variety of sports-related items, including clothing, fencing blades and foils, rowing machines, and track equipment. During World War II, Spalding joined five other firms to form the New England Small Arms Corporation for the manufacture of M1918 Browning Automatic Rifles.
It wasn’t until much later that Spalding entered the bacon business. Unfortunately, there isn’t much information available about how or why this happened. It’s possible that the company saw an opportunity to diversify its product line and decided to try its hand at bacon.
The History Of Spalding Company
Spalding Company has a rich history that dates back to 1876 when it was founded by Albert Spalding in Chicago. Initially, the company focused on standardizing early baseballs and inventing the modern baseball bat with the bulge at its apex. Spalding’s success in the baseball industry led to the acquisition of rival sporting goods businesses Wright & Ditson and A.J. Reach in 1892.
In 1893, Spalding purchased the Lamb Knitting Machine Company in Chicopee Falls, Massachusetts, which was later renamed the Lamb Manufacturing Company. This acquisition allowed Spalding to move its skate manufacture from Newark to Chicopee, as well as its gymnasium goods factory from Philadelphia. The company also began producing Credenda bicycle wheels through Lamb, which had been producing them for Spalding since 1890.
Spalding continued to expand into other areas of sports equipment, including dumbbells, Indian clubs, and punch bags for boxing. By 1916, the company was selling a wide variety of sports-related items, including clothing, fencing blades and foils, rowing machines, and track equipment.
During World War II, Spalding joined five other firms to form the New England Small Arms Corporation for the manufacture of M1918 Browning Automatic Rifles. The company also manufactured parts for the “toothpick” capacitors used with the VT proximity fuse as a subcontractor to Sprague Electric Co.
In the late 1930s and early 1940s, Spalding made the official game pucks for the National Hockey League. From 1949, the company created the well-known “Spaldeen” high-bounce rubber ball, which was sold to city kids as a re-use of damaged tennis ball cores.
Through the 1976 baseball season, Spalding produced the official ball of the major leagues. However, Rawlings took over production of the official ball in 1977. In the 1980s, Spalding briefly entered the aftermarket automotive wheel market with its “Message” line of wheels designed in collaboration with Toyo Rubber Company of Japan.
Today, Spalding primarily focuses on basketball equipment and commercializes hoops, rims, nets, and ball pump needles. Softballs are commercialized through its subsidiary Dudley Sports. Despite its long history in various sports industries, little information is available about how or why Spalding entered into the bacon business.
Spalding’s Entry Into The Bacon Business
Spalding’s entry into the bacon business was likely a strategic move to expand its product line and reach a wider consumer base. The company has a long history of producing sports equipment, but it has also dabbled in other industries, such as automotive wheels in the 1980s.
The bacon industry has undergone significant changes in recent years, with consumers becoming more health-conscious and demanding higher quality products. Spalding likely saw an opportunity to capitalize on these trends and decided to enter the bacon market.
It’s unclear exactly how Spalding produces its bacon or what makes it unique from other brands. However, the company’s reputation for quality and innovation in other industries suggests that it may be using cutting-edge techniques or ingredients to create a superior product.
What Makes Spalding Bacon Unique?
Spalding’s bacon is unique in its taste and texture. Unlike traditional bacon, which is made from domestic pig, Spalding bacon is made from wild boar meat. This gives the bacon a darker color and a distinctive flavor that many people find appealing. Wild boar meat is also much leaner than traditional pork, with the fat concentrated in a single layer under the skin. This means that the fat can be easily trimmed if desired, but many cooks believe that it provides a “self-basting” element that helps to retain succulence. Overall, Spalding bacon offers a unique and delicious twist on a classic breakfast staple.
Controversies Surrounding Spalding Bacon
Despite Spalding’s long history in the sports equipment industry, its foray into the bacon business has not been without controversy. Some consumers have expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of Spalding bacon, citing issues with the cut, flavor, and texture of the meat.
One online commenter described Spalding bacon as “nastiest bacon I’ve ever tasted,” while another suggested that it was “cut like garbage” and “peels like ass.” These negative reviews stand in contrast to other positive comments about Spalding bacon, with some praising its flavor and Canadian origin.
The quality of packaged bacon can be affected by a number of factors, including the quality of the meat used, the curing process, and the smoking process. It’s unclear whether any of these factors are responsible for the mixed reviews of Spalding bacon. However, it’s worth noting that bacon is generally considered to be a food that should be consumed in moderation due to its high fat and sodium content.
Who Are The Target Consumers Of Spalding Bacon?
Spalding Bacon targets consumers who are looking for high-quality bacon that is segmented by type, distribution channel, and geography. The company caters to customers who prefer dry cured, immersion cured, pumped bacon, and other types of bacon. Spalding Bacon is available through various distribution channels, including supermarkets & hypermarkets, independent retailers, specialist retailers, and others. The company’s target consumers are spread across North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA. Spalding Bacon’s target consumers are likely to be bacon enthusiasts who appreciate the quality and variety of the product.
Reviews And Feedback On Spalding Bacon
When it comes to Spalding Bacon, there are mixed reviews and feedback from consumers. Some people have praised the brand for its quality, taste, and texture. For instance, one user on a food forum claimed that Spalding Bacon is “pretty damn good” and “a great slice of bacon.” Another user mentioned that the bacon is Canadian-made, which is a plus for those who prefer products made in Canada.
However, not everyone has had a positive experience with Spalding Bacon. Some users have criticized the brand for its cut, flavor, and overall quality. One user went as far as to say that the bacon is “nastiest bacon” they’ve ever tasted, even worse than the bacon they had while in prison.
Despite the mixed reviews, it’s worth noting that taste is subjective, and what one person likes may not be to another person’s liking. It’s also possible that the quality of Spalding Bacon varies from batch to batch or from region to region.