Farm share of U.S. households' fresh vegetable expenditures averaged 25 percent in the last decade
ERS compares retail food prices with prices received by farmers for various agricultural commodities. Over the past decade, the farm share—the ratio of grocery store prices (retail value) to prices received by farmers (farm value)—for a basket of 16 commonly-consumed fresh vegetables has fluctuated between 23 and 27 percent. In 2012, the retail value of the basket fell by 5 percent, but the farm value fell more, causing the farm share to decrease from 25 to 23 percent. The 15-percent decrease in the basket’s farm value was driven by lower prices at the farm gate for potatoes, tomatoes, and lettuce due in part to large harvests in 2012. These vegetables (along with onions) are given greater weight in the basket to reflect the large quantities that American households purchase. The statistics in this chart are based on the Price Spreads from Farm to Consumer data product on the ERS website, updated November 2013.
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