Households spend more money on food when incomes rise, but food represents a smaller portion of income as they allocate additional funds to other goods. In 2012, households in the middle income quintile spent an average of $5,798 on food, representing 12.3 percent of income, while the lowest income households spent $3,502 on food, representing 35.1 percent of income. Rising food prices and falling incomes put pressure on food budgets. In pre-recession 2006, households in the lowest income quintile spent 32 percent of their incomes on food.
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