Consumer Spending Patterns Change For Home, Away From Home Foods
According to a recent USDA report; Food Consumption, Prices, and Expenditures, each American consumed, on the average, 81 pounds more of commercially grown vegetables in 1997 than in 1970; 65 pounds more of grain products; 57 pounds more of fruit; 32 pounds more of caloric sweeteners; 13 pounds more of total red meat, poultry, and fish (boneless, trimmed equivalent); 17 pounds more of cheese; 13 pounds more of added fats and oils; 3 gallons more of beer; 70 fewer eggs; 10 gallons less of coffee; and 7 gallons less of milk. Americans spent $715 billion for food in 1997 and another $95 billion for alcoholic beverages.
While these figures would lead one to assume that spending for food was higher in 1997, an article in the recent issue of American Demographics indicates that spending for food, both at home and away from home, actually dropped in individual households between 1987 and 1997, after adjusting for inflation. In adjusted dollars per household, food at home dropped by 2.0 percent, food away from home dropped by 13.1 percent, and spending on alcoholic beverages dropped by 24.3 percent. According to the article, “The stellar economic growth of the last few years has only recently restored spending by individual households to 1987 levels.” The largest share of American householders, those of average age 35-44 (the largest share of total households) spend just 16 percent above the average of all households. Ten years ago, this group spent 29 percent over the average, or a 9 percent cut in spending, after adjusting for inflation, it said.
COPYRIGHT 1999 Sparks Companies, Inc.
COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group