Food Expenditure Series
The ERS Food Expenditure Series is a comprehensive data set that measures the U.S. food system—quantifying the value of food acquired in the United States by type of product, outlet, and purchaser. The data series measures the value of food acquired—including food and beverage sales (as well as taxes and tips)—and the value of food produced at home, donated, and furnished to employees and institutionalized persons. The Food Expenditure Series is a valuable tool for government agencies, academics, and private sector stakeholders to assess and track developments in consumer food purchasing behaviors and the food supply. The food expenditures data complement current ERS data sets: Food Availability (Per Capita) Data System, Food Price Outlook, Food Dollar Series, and FoodAPS National Household Food Acquisition and Purchase Survey.
Food expenditures are allocated annually between four types of products from various outlets and three types of purchasers and users. In addition to the annual estimates, sales of food at home (FAH) and food away from home (FAFH) are available on a monthly basis—bench-marked to the annual estimates, with each annual revision.
Note that the source data and methods were comprehensively revised in 2018, resulting in a break from previously published food expenditures data from 1997 forward. For more information, see the Technical Bulletin by Abigail M. Okrent, Howard Elitzak, Tim Park, and Sarah Rehkamp:Measuring the Value of the U.S. Food System: Revisions to the Food Expenditure Series
The previous food expenditure data series is available continuously from 1889 to 2014. For ease of use, these estimates have been organized in a tabular format consistent with the comprehensive revision (see the tables under Archived Food Expenditure Tables).
With the release of the 2017 Economic Census, the revised estimates were replaced with final estimates in 2022. Changes to the 2017 Economic Census resulted in revisions to the Food Expenditure Series data files—additional details are provided in the Documentation.
For data on expenditures on food and alcoholic beverages that were consumed at home by selected countries, see International Consumer and Food Industry Trends.