Publications

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  • Vegetables and Melons Outlook: February 2003

    VGS-295, February 25, 2003

    Planted area for spring-season onions is expected to decline 12 percent to 34,400 acres. Plantings are down in three of the four reporting States with Texas (down 23 percent) expecting the largest decline. Although area planted is forecast lower, production could exceed the short 2002 crop of 9.7 million hundredweight (cwt), if yields in Texas and Georgia improve and harvested area in Georgia recovers from the disease-induced losses of a year ago.

  • Vegetables and Melons Outlook: February 2011

    VGS-342-01, February 03, 2011

    This report presents a financial snapshot of the U.S. vegetable and melon farms by region and farm size over three 3-year periods (1999-2007).

  • Vegetables and Melons Outlook: June 2003

    VGS-297, June 20, 2003

    Per capita consumption of all vegetables and melons (on a fresh-equivalent basis) is expected to increase 1 percent to 445 pounds in 2003--up about 6 pounds from 2002. Gains are expected to be spread across fresh and processing items, led by potatoes, tomatoes, and sweet corn. In 2002, per capita vegetable and melon use fell about 2 pounds to 439 pounds as lower fresh-market vegetable and potato consumption outweighed increased canning and freezing use. Despite the decline in total fresh-market use in 2002, fresh-market tomatoes reached a record-high 18.3 pounds per person, while cucumber, onion, and cantaloup use were the second-highest on record.

  • Vegetables and Melons Outlook: March 2007

    VGS-31901, March 06, 2007

    Carrots are one of the most popular vegetables in the United States and fresh-market carrot consumption has been increasing over the past few decades. Using a combination of ACNielsen Homescan panel data and USDA's Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals, this article examines where and how much fresh and processed carrots are eaten and links this consumption to various economic, social, and demographic characteristics of consumers. The analysis indicates that per capita carrot consumption is greatest in the East and Central regions of the country. About 80 percent of fresh-market carrots are purchased at retail and consumed at home, with the majority consisting of fresh-cut (including baby) carrots.

  • Vegetables and Melons Outlook: October 2008

    VGS-329-01, October 27, 2008

    Rapid growth in the organic foods market has placed great pressure on farmers and handlers in the U.S. organic sector. Handlers are firms that produce, process, and distribute organic food. As the middlemen in the supply chain, organic handlers have been unable at times to provide as much of their final product as the market wants and have also found needed ingredients in short supply. A survey of certified organic handlers in the United States reveals that handlers widely use contracts as a means to not only procure needed ingredients but also to develop and maintain strong working relationships with their suppliers. Only a few organic handlers, however, have worked to assist farmers directly with farmers' transition to organic production.

  • Vegetables and Melons Outlook: September 2009

    VGS-328-01, September 09, 2008

    Vegetable and melon production requires a substantial investment in production inputs. Using data from USDA's Agricultural Resource Management Survey (ARMS), this article presents and explores the major expense components of specialized U.S. and regional vegetable and melon farms during 1998-2006. Total cash expenses per acre for specialized U.S. vegetable and melon farms increased 32 percent between 1998-2000 and 2004-06 and were highest in the West and lowest in the Midwest. Labor accounted for 30 percent of U.S. cash expenses, followed by fertilizer and agricultural chemicals at 18 percent.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: April 2016

    VGS-356, April 29, 2016

    U.S. production of commercial vegetables and dry pulses (including mushrooms, potatoes, and sweet potatoes) totaled 127 billion pounds in 2015, down less than 1 percent from 2014.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: April 2017

    VGS-358, April 28, 2017

    On a per capita basis, the total volume of vegetables and pulses averaged 383 pounds in 2016—up 2 percent from last year.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: August 2016

    VGS-357, August 30, 2016

    Dry Edible Peas Harvested Area at Record-High.

  • 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: March 2012

    VGS-349, March 30, 2012

    Fresh-market vegetable supplies remain strong, pushing prices lower for most crops. Market impacts from an early-year freeze in parts of Florida were minimal as production was still largely in southern parts of the State. In 2011 (the first year of data availability) organic fresh vegetable exports were less than 10 percent of trade in conventional production on average. Shares were notably higher in onion sets, carrots and spinach. Value of both imports and exports of all fresh vegetables increased in 2011, although trade volume slowed somewhat in early 2012.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: March 2013

    VGS-353, March 29, 2013

    According to the California Processing Tomato Report, National Agricultural Statistics Service, USDA, California tomato processors intend to contract 2.8 percent more processing tomatoes in 2013 than the previous year.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: May 2015

    VGS-355, May 01, 2015

    Total vegetables and pulses output volume rose 5 percent in 2014 despite ongoing drought and water shortages in California, where 40 percent of U.S. vegetables and pulses are grown.

  • Vegetables and Pulses Outlook: October 2017

    VGS-359, October 27, 2017

    Flooding, hurricanes, and drought disrupt otherwise strong vegetable and dry pulse markets.

  • 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: September 2014

    VGS-354, September 30, 2014

    Despite the decrease in domestic production of fresh-market vegetables, both producer and consumer prices are down as import volumes fill the gaps.

  • 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.

  • What Determines the Variety of a Household's Vegetable Purchases?

    AIB-792-3, November 12, 2004

    The USDA encourages people to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables through the Food Guide Pyramid and participation in the National 5-A-Day Partnership. A varied diet helps ensure a complete mix of nutrients, and a lack of variety in vegetable consumption has been further linked to the incidence of obesity (e.g., McCrory et al.). To assist these efforts, the USDA's Economic Research Service has investigated the factors that influence the purchase of vegetables, and identified obstacles to variety.

  • Working the Land With 10 Acres: Small Acreage Farming in the United States

    EIB-123, April 29, 2014

    Small acreage does not necessarily translate into low farm sales. About 17 percent (50,000) of farms with 10 or fewer acres had gross sales of at least $10,000 in 2007, and approximately 6,000 had sales of more than $250,000 that year.