Why Is Beef Jerky So Expensive? (Top 4 Reasons Explained)

You probably know how expensive beef jerky can be if you are a fan. Although beef jerky isn’t cheap, it has some very significant benefits. For starters, it’s delicious. Unfortunately, when you start looking, you will not have much luck finding a beef jerky sale. There is no way to make this product any cheaper over time. So, you may ask:

Why is beef jerky so expensive? Beef jerky is expensive because it uses a good cut of meat. Also, the raw beef used to make jerky is expensive. Another thing is that making beef jerky is also labor-intensive, and it takes a long time to make it. All these factors make this snack so expensive.

Beef jerky is a satisfying treat and snack, which is why many people want to enjoy such now and then. However, the high price may make you question whether it’s worth spending on a snack. If that’s your concern, we got you!

Below, we’ll help you understand the value of beef jerky and give you the top four reasons behind the high price. This way, you can see if beef jerky is a treat worth spending, especially if you’re on a budget.

Without further ado, let’s get into it!

Why Is Beef Jerky So Expensive

Is beef jerky expensive?

Yes, beef jerky is expensive. The reason beef jerky is so expensive is the high costs of raw beef, the quality ingredients, the non-automated processing, and the time & energy required. So, despite being one of the most popular snacks on the market, beef jerky can also be one of the priciest.

Why is beef jerky so expensive?

Below are the four main reasons why beef jerky is so expensive. You can read further to learn more about what makes this snack expensive.

Beef jerky is made from a good cut.

Companies and manufacturers of high-end beef jerky will use higher-quality cuts of meat. If you get a better cut of meat, you will have to pay more.

In some cases, the less expensive cuts of beef jerky are made from leftovers of the cow that aren’t as popular as others.

Even though some people are pretty happy with this type of beef jerky, there are differences between brands.

You should always choose a leaner beef jerky cut if you want great-tasting jerky. It is always more expensive to purchase this type of beef, which you can see when you shop at the store.

It always makes more money when the meat is leaner, even as simple as ground beef. This is because many of the meat’s flavors come from leaner meat. 

One of the problems some individuals run into is that some jerky becomes so expensive, like buying a steak.

The price of beef is expensive.

Beef is more expensive than other meats. As a result, the demand for beef was very high but has decreased significantly in recent years.

Beef is now less likely to be purchased than chicken and turkey. But, of course, pricing plays a part in this, and other factors include diet and health.

People are gravitating more towards chicken because it tends to be leaner and healthier and is becoming more popular.

In addition to supply and demand, beef is more expensive to produce because cattle are expensive to raise. You will need more land, staff, food, and time to raise cows.

In contrast to raising beef, chickens are cheaper and easier to raise. Therefore, it is no wonder that beef costs come back to the consumer because there are so many costs associated with raising beef.

The beef industry investment requires long-term planning to ensure profits and long-term sustainability.

Beef jerky production is labor-intensive.

When it comes to beef jerky, two factors need to be considered. Those are the cows and the jerky produced by the labor involved in raising them.

It takes years to raise, feed, and care for cows before you can use them for meat production. It is a labor-intensive process that will require staff, electricity, and food. A farmer works hard, and there is rarely any rest or end of work in sight on many days.

Even after the animal has been raised, there is still processing. When done correctly, beef jerky takes time to cook. It will take some time and money to complete this process from start to finish, so it is not something that you can do within minutes.

Additionally, beef jerky won’t be flavorless. Some processes need to be followed to give beef jerky a rich taste.

Because of the high water content involved in beef jerky, it is sometimes necessary to use a lot of the spices or flavors used on the jerky. In addition, a product’s cost includes labor, one of the most expensive things for any business.

Beef jerky production is time-consuming.

It’s time-consuming to make beef jerky. This is true for most food products. It takes time for some things to grow or mature before food is ready for consumption.

When it comes to beef jerky, the process is lengthy, and it gets more complicated once the product is made. This form of meat lets people enjoy it without preparing or cooking it. It can be kept for a very long time and has a long shelf life.

This is a great convenience, but it was not without significant effort on the part of some people. So next time you buy beef jerky, you may want to keep these things in mind.

How much does beef jerky cost?

The cost of beef jerky depends on several factors. However, we can round it up on the cheap, average, and expensive options. For every 16 ounces or less of cheap beef jerky, you can expect to pay $25. Average beef jerky can cost around $30 for every 16 ounces. Lastly, expensive beef jerky can cost around $35 or more.

Is beef jerky worth the money?

Yes, beef jerky is worth the money. The price of beef jerky is reasonable when you consider all the resources spent to make one. Still, consumers may prefer cheap jerky due to its cheaper, fattier cuts with more marbling, but this alternative sacrifices quality for a lower price point. A quality beef jerky cut is worth the price because of its taste and texture.

Beef jerky is so popular because of its richer flavor. A jerky has moisture reduction, and its flavor is more decadent than uncured meat. Today, it remains a popular low-fat, high-protein snack. People preserved the meat for the first time in ancient times when civilizations searched for the best ways to preserve it.


In a nutshell, beef jerky is expensive because it is made from a high-quality cut of meat. It is also costly to purchase raw beef. Furthermore, beef jerky is a labor-intensive product that takes a long time to make. For these reasons, this snack is rather expensive.

Something is satisfying about beef jerky, which is why many people indulge in it occasionally. However, the high price may make you wonder if spending money on a snack is worth it. We hope this information helped you decide whether it’s worth buying beef jerky or not for you.



Image credits – Canva

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