Economic Information Bulletin No. (EIB-23) 115 pp

March 2007

Food Spending in American Households, 2003-04

Average yearly expenditures on food in U.S. urban households increased between 2003 and 2004. Over the period, annual per capita spending on food rose from $2,035 to $2,207. The 2004 average comprises $1,347 spent on food consumed at home and $860 spent on food consumed away from home. These amounts reflect a year-to-year increase of 7.9 percent in food-at-home expenditures and 9.3 percent in food-away-from-home expenditures. Wealthier urban households tended to spend more than other urban households for both food at home and food away from home, and they spent a larger share of their food budget than other households on food consumed away from home. The share of the food budget spent on food consumed away from home varied from 30 percent for the poorest group to 44 percent for the wealthiest.

Keywords: Food expenditures, BLS Consumer Expenditure Diary Survey, socioeconomic characteristics

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