Food Dollar Series

The food dollar series measures annual expenditures by U.S. consumers on domestically produced food. This data series is composed of three primary series—the marketing bill series, the industry group series, and the primary factor series—that shed light on different aspects of the food-supply chain. The three series show three different ways to split up the same food dollar. See:

A Revised and Expanded Food Dollar Series: A Better Understanding of Our Food Costs

All statistics reported in the dollar-bill images represent a percentage of an average annual food dollar expenditure (see Glossary). The same statistics reported in total dollar denominations are available in downloadable tables (see Download the Data).

Data are available from 1993 to 2019 and are updated annually. Beginning with the 2021 updates, the principal data source of the food-dollar series is released every year (see Inter-industry relationships (Input-Output matrix)). 

Roughly every 5 years since 1997, a new benchmark data source is published (see Industry Economic Accounts: Benchmark Input-Output Accounts) based on the U.S. Economic Census and U.S. Agricultural Census. With a new benchmark, all data in the food-dollar series covering years since the previous benchmark undergo a final revision. For example, in 2014, the 2007 benchmark data were published, so all data from 1993 to 2013 in the food-dollar series have been reconciled to benchmark data for the years 1997, 2002, and 2007. Beginning with the food-dollar updates published in 2014, 16 additional commodity-specific tables have been added to the food-dollar data series that report only benchmark-year statistics (see Commodity Tables in the Glossary). 

A 10-year review of the Food Dollar estimation program is underway. Once completed, there is the potential for historical revisions in some of the current food-dollar series. Because of this, the previously planned incorporation of the 2012 benchmark data and historical revisions back to 2008 have been postponed. In its place, the usual non-benchmark year principal data-source updates are provided (tables 1 to 6). These updates include revisions to many of the preliminary 2017 and 2018 nominal and real (2009 prices) data, and new nominal and real data for 2019.

Errata: On June 17, 2021, the Food dollar nominal data files were revised to correct the values reported in “million dollars” for 2008–19. No other data were affected.