Publications

Sort by: Title | Date
  • Healthy Restaurant Destination? Just Think Twice

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2006

    An ERS analysis of a 2002 consumer survey conducted by Rutgers University finds that respondents who were more willing to forgo other food attributes for convenience were about 8 percent more likely to dine out at least every few days. Respondents citing convenience as the main factor influencing their away-from-home food choices were 17 percent more likely to purchase fast food than were respondents who did not place a premium on convenience.

  • Data Feature

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2006

    ERS has revised its market basket statistics to reflect current spending patterns for fresh produce. Based on new consumer and farm baskets, farm revenues accounted for 26.6 percent of consumer spending for fresh fruit at retail foodstores in 2004, and 23.5 percent for fresh vegetables.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2006

    Research area charts from the November 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Indicators

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2006

    Indicators tables from the November 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Let's Eat Out: Americans Weigh Taste, Convenience, and Nutrition

    EIB-19, October 17, 2006

    Whether eating out or buying carry-out, Americans are consuming more and more of their calories from full-service and fast-food restaurant fare. The share of daily caloric intake from food purchased and/or eaten away from home increased from 18 percent to 32 percent between the late 1970s and the middle 1990s, and the away-from-home market grew to account for about half of total food expenditures in 2004, up from 34 percent in 1974. Analysis of a survey of U.S. consumers indicates that respondents want convenience and an enjoyable dining experience, but the desire for health also plays a role as does diet-health knowledge.

  • The Food Assistance Landscape: FY 2006 Midyear Report

    EIB-6-3, September 15, 2006

    USDA expenditures for its 15 food assistance programs totaled $27.7 billion during the first half of fiscal 2006 (October 2005-March 2006), a 7-percent increase over the first half of fiscal 2005. Five programs-the Food Stamp Program; the National School Lunch Program; the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC); the School Breakfast Program; and the Child and Adult Care Food Program-accounted for 96 percent of USDA's total expenditures for food assistance. This report uses preliminary data from USDA's Food and Nutrition Service to examine trends in the programs at the midpoint of fiscal 2006. It also summarizes a number of ERS research reports on the Food Stamp Program released in recent years that may help inform discussions of the 2007 reauthorization of the farm bill.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, September 01, 2006

    Research area charts from the September 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • In The Long Run

    Amber Waves, September 01, 2006

    With incomes climbing at a faster rate than expenditures for food, Americans spent 9.9 percent of their disposable personal income on food in 2005, down from 23.4 percent in 1929. This decline is even more striking considering the labor and technology that go into the multitude of processed foods on today’s supermarket shelves.

  • Americans Switch From Fresh to Frozen Potatoes

    Amber Waves, June 01, 2006

    While potatoes have been a mainstay of the American diet for generations, how potatoes are eaten has changed dramatically. In 1960, Americans consumed a yearly average of 81 pounds of fresh potatoes and 7.6 pounds of frozen potatoes. In 2004, the average American consumed 46.5 pounds of fresh potatoes and 56.4 pounds of frozen potatoes, mainly french fries. Taste, convenience, technology, and the growing away-from-home market have all played a role.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, June 01, 2006

    Research area charts from the June 2006 issue of Amber Waves.

  • Behind The Data

    Amber Waves, June 01, 2006

    The ERS per capita food availability data are a historical series that measure the national food supply of several hundred foods. It is the only source of time series data on food availability in the country.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, April 01, 2006

    Research Areas: Markets and Trade, Diet and Health, Farms Firms and Households and Rural America - April 2006

  • Recent Meetings

    Amber Waves, February 01, 2006

    Snapshots of recent events at ERS - February 2006

  • Food Stamps and Obesity: Ironic Twist or Complex Puzzle?

    Amber Waves, February 01, 2006

    With its roots in the Great Depression and expansion during the 1970s after the Government’s declared war on poverty, the Food Stamp Program was designed to provide a nutritional safety net for low-income households while boosting demand for domestic agricultural products.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, February 01, 2006

    Indicators: Markets and Trade, Diet and Health, Farms Firms and Households and Rural America - February 2006

  • Going With the Grain: Consumers Responding to New Dietary Guidelines

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2005

    For the first time, the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans single out whole grains, recommending that half of all daily grain servings come from whole-grain foods. Analysis of ACNielsen Homescan data show the popularity of whole-grain products appears to be rising. Comparing purchases during the 8 weeks before and after the release of the Guidelines, ERS found that shoppers bought nearly 12 percent more whole-grain breads, 19 percent more whole-grain rice, and 16 percent more whole-grain ready-to-eat breakfast cereals.

  • Research Areas

    Amber Waves, November 01, 2005

    Indicators: Markets and Trade, Diet and Health, Resources and Environment and Rural America - November 2005

  • Food Dynamics and USDA's New Dietary Guidelines

    EIB-5, September 29, 2005

    Food Dynamics provides the most up-to-date information on consumer behavior and retail food market conditions.

  • How Americans Quench Their Thirsts

    Amber Waves, September 01, 2005

    Lower income households buy more powdered soft drinks and tea, and less milk and fruit juices, than higher income households. Both income groups purchase similar amounts of fruit drinks and carbonated soft drinks. Across both groups, at-home beverage purchases provided 10 percent of daily calories and about 20 percent and 70 percent of the recommended daily intakes of calcium and vitamin C, respectively.

  • Commercialization of Food Consumption in Rural China

    ERR-8, July 20, 2005

    Over 60 percent of China's consumers live on farms. Consequently, a large share of the agricultural commodities produced in China is consumed on farms by the rural population. This study of rural food consumption patterns in China finds that rural households rely on self-produced commodities, especially grains and vegetables, for a large share of the food they consume. However, the study also finds that the reliance on self-produced food has fallen since the mid-1990s as rural households purchased an increasing share of their food.