Publications

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  • The Effects of Phytosanitary Regulations on U.S. Imports of Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

    ERR-168, July 07, 2014

    ERS reports the rates at which inspection of fruit and vegetable imports into the United States result in phytosanitary treatments at the border, and finds little evidence that phytosanitary regulations affect imports significantly.

  • The Estimated Amount, Value, and Calories of Postharvest Food Losses at the Retail and Consumer Levels in the United States

    EIB-121, February 20, 2014

    In the United States, 31 percent-or 133 billion pounds-of the 430 billion pounds of the available food supply at the retail and consumer levels in 2010 went uneaten. The estimated value of this food loss was $161.6 billion using retail prices. For the first time, ERS estimated the calories associated with food loss: 141 trillion in 2010, or 1,249 calories per capita per day. Errata: On June 27, 2014, Tables 2, 3, and 5 were updated to correct some incorrect values. The errors did not affect summary totals in the tables or report findings.

  • The Influence of Income and Prices on Global Dietary Patterns by Country, Age, and Gender

    ERR-225, March 02, 2017

    Worldwide changes in eating habits are contributing to a global rise in obesity and related diseases across all countries. To address this issue, this report investigates how income and prices influence dietary habits globally.

  • The Spice Market in the United States: Recent Developments and Prospects

    AIB-709, July 03, 1995

    On both a volume and value basis, the United States is the world's largest spice importer and consumer, with both imports and consumption on an uptrend for the past 10 years. While the United States imports more than 40 separate spices, seven of these (vanilla beans, black and white pepper, capsicums, sesame seed, cinnamon, mustard, and oregano) account for more than 75 percent of the total annual value of spice imports. While the United States imports spices from more than 50 countries, 5 of these countries (Indonesia, Mexico, India, Canada, and China) regularly account for one-half of the annual value of spice imports. The United States produces nearly 40 percent of its annual spice needs, with imports supplying the remainder. Growing domestic production consists of capsicum peppers, mustard seed, dehydrated onion and garlic, and herbs. U.S. spice exports have also been expanding in recent years, led by dehydrated garlic and onion. Rising domestic use of spices reflects growing Hispanic and Asian populations, a trend toward the use of spices to compensate for less salt and lower fat levels in foods, and heightened popularity of ethnic foods from Asia and Latin America.

  • The U.S. Produce Industry and Labor: Facing the Future in a Global Economy

    ERR-106, November 12, 2010

    Fruit and vegetable production is a labor-intensive process, and over half of the hired workers employed by growers are believed to be unauthorized immigrants. Reforms to immigration laws, if they reduce the labor supply, may increase the cost of farm labor. The authors of this report assess how particular fruit and vegetable commodities might adjust if labor rates increased.

  • The USDA Fruit and Vegetable Pilot Program Evaluation

    AIB-792-6, November 12, 2004

    National data on the diets of U.S. children and adolescents indicate they are consuming more fat and saturated fat than recommended while their intakes of fruits and vegetables fall well below recommended levels.

  • Trade Issues Facing U.S. Horticulture in the WTO Negotiations

    VGS-285-01, August 30, 2001

    This article discusses issues affecting U.S. trade in fruits and vegetables that are likely to be considered during upcoming trade negotiations at the World Trade Organization (WTO). Tariff reductions, tariff-rate quotas, export subsidies, and domestic support are discussed, as are the impacts of anti-dumping and countervailing measures and the Sanitary and Phytosanitary Agreement on horticultural trade flows.

  • U.S. Food Commodity Consumption Broken Down by Demographics, 1994-2008

    ERR-206, March 30, 2016

    ERS drew on national dietary intake surveys to break down the ERS Loss-Adjusted Food Availability data and show food consumption by demographic characteristics for 63 commodities (who eats what food commodities and how much).

  • U.S. Food Import Patterns, 1998-2007

    FAU-125, August 06, 2009

    Using import data from the U.S. Census Bureau, this study examines patterns of U.S. food imports for fiscal years 1998-2007. Results indicate faster import growth trends for consumer-ready foods, such as fruit, vegetables, meats, seafood, and processed food products. Although the United States imported most bulk food commodities and perishable consumer-ready products, such as fruit and vegetables, from neighboring countries in the Western Hemisphere, it imported processed foods, spices, and other tropical products from more global sources, with rising import shares for many countries in Asia.

  • U.S. Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Marketing: Emerging Trade Practices, Trends, and Issues

    AER-795, January 25, 2001

    In the past year, trade practices between fresh produce shippers and food retailers gained national attention. Shippers are concerned that recent retail consolidation has led to market power and the growing incidence of fees and services. Retailers argue that these new trade practices reflect their costs of doing business and the demands of consumers. Trade practices include fees such as volume discounts and slotting fees, as well as services like automatic inventory replenishment, special packaging, and requirements for third-party food safety certification. Trade practices also refer to the overall structure of a transaction-for example, long-term relationships or contracts versus daily sales with no continuing commitment. This study compares trade practices in 1999 with those prevalent in 1994, placing them in the broader context of the evolving shipper/retailer relationship. Most shippers and retailers reported that the incidence and magnitude of fees and services associated with transactions has increased over the last 5 years. Fees paid to retailers are usually around 1-2 percent of sales for most of the commodities we examined, but 1-8 percent for bagged salads.

  • U.S. Fresh Produce Markets: Marketing Channels, Trade Practices, and Retail Pricing Behavior

    AER-825, September 23, 2003

    Retail consolidation, technological change in production and marketing, and growing consumer demand have altered the traditional market relationships between producers, wholesalers, and retailers.

  • U.S. Fruit and Vegetable Consumption: Who, What, Where, and How Much

    AIB-792-2, November 12, 2004

    For good health, USDA urges American consumers to eat more fruits and vegetables-5 to 9 servings per day-and to choose a healthier, more varied mix of these foods. The variety of produce available to Americans has blossomed in recent years, but are consumers responding? The first step in determining this is to ask who eats what, where, and how much. Since 2000, ERS has been analyzing data from national USDA food consumption surveys, and we are ready to share some highlights.

  • U.S. Fruit and Vegetable Imports Outpace Exports

    Amber Waves, June 01, 2005

    The U.S., traditionally a net exporter of fruits and vegetables, has become a large net importer, with imports more than doubling between 1994 and 2004 to reach $12.7 billion. U.S. exports of fruits and vegetables have also risen but less rapidly, reaching $9.7 billion in 2004.

  • USDA Agricultural Projections to 2016

    OCE-2007-1, February 14, 2007

    This report provides longrun (10-year) projections for the agricultural sector through 2016. Projections cover agricultural commodities, agricultural trade, and aggregate indicators of the sector, such as farm income and food prices.

  • USDA Agricultural Projections to 2020

    OCE-111, February 14, 2011

    This report provides longrun (10-year) projections for the agricultural sector through 2020. Projections cover agricultural commodities, agricultural trade, and aggregate indicators of the sector, such as farm income and food prices.

  • Understanding Fruit and Vegetable Choices: Economic and Behavioral Influences

    AIB-792-1, November 12, 2004

    Nutritionists recommend a variety of vegetables, including regular servings of deep-yellow and dark-green vegetables prepared with limited amounts of fats and sugars. In contrast, the most popular vegetable choice of most Americans is fried potatoes.

  • Untapped Potential of Cuba's Citrus and Tropical Fruit Industry

    Amber Waves, June 01, 2004

    Cuba's production of tropical and citrus fruit has grown rapidly, especially during the 1990s. If the current U.S. embargo on trade with Cuba were lifter, Cuba could become an important supplier of fruit to the United States and could present serious competition to U.S. growers, particularly in Florida.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: June 2012

    VGS-350, June 28, 2012

    Prices at the point of first sale remain low for most fresh-market vegetables and consumer prices also fell in the first 5 months of 2012. Volumes are strong as mild winter and early spring temperatures allowed early planting in many areas. Per capita use of fresh-market vegetables fell less than 1 percent in 2011 compared to the previous year.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: September 2012

    VGS-351, September 27, 2012

    Use of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) has increased in the United States as consumption of food such as humus expands. I n 2012, a record 196,900 acres were planted with Washington, Idaho, and California leading producers in the previous year.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook; December 2012

    VGS-352, December 18, 2012

    The 2012 U.S. dry bean crop is expected to reach 31.8 million cwt, an increase of almost 60 percent from low production levels of 2011.