Ag and Food Sectors and the Economy

The U.S. agriculture sector extends beyond the farm business to include a range of farm-related industries. The largest of these are food service and food manufacturing. Americans' expenditures on food amount to 13 percent of household budgets on average. Among Federal Government outlays on farm and food programs, nutrition assistance far outpaces other programs.


Food accounted for 13.0 percent of American households’ expenditures in 2019

With a 13.0-percent share, food ranked third behind housing (32.8 percent) and transportation (17.1 percent) among the expenditures of the average American household in 2019. Compared with 2018, shares for food, health care, savings, and transportation fell slightly in 2019, and shares for education, personal insurance/pensions, entertainment/alcoholic beverages, and “other” categories of spending rose slightly.