Butter popularity hits 40-year high for Americans, cows dancing with glee in Pa.

A 1,000 pound work of art featuring two dancing cows next to three human beings drinking milkshakes is made entirely out of butter and on display at the 2014 Pennsylvania Farm Show. Are they dancing over the fact that per-capita consumption of butter in America reached a 40-year high in 2012? (Courtesy of Mid-Atlantic Dairy Association)

No wonder the cows are literally dancing at the annual Pennsylvania Farm Show being held this week in Harrisburg.

(Note: The cows dancing are made of butter, part of a 1,000-pound butter sculpture by a Conshohocken artist on display at the farm show.)

Americans' consumption of butter has hit a 40-year high, according to an organization known as the American Butter Institute (ABI), a 106-year-old organization that lobbies on behalf of 90 percent of the country's butter producers.

In 2012, per capita consumption reached 5.6 pounds, up a whole pound and a half from just 15 years earlier in 1997, according to ABI.

The group announced the increased popularity of the dairy product as it unveiled a new logo. Executive director Anuja Miner said in a statement that butter's increased popularity is likely linked to recent shift away from foods containing trans fats, of which butter's main competitor margarine contains a lot.

"Margarine and other spreads are no longer viewed as healthier alternatives," Miner said.