Whether a Pinch or a Dash, It Adds Up to a Growing U.S. Spice Market

The United States is the world's largest consumer and importer of spices. A growing population, a trend toward using spices to compensate for less salt and fat in food, and a heightened popularity of ethnic foods have pushed U.S. demand for spices to record levels. Rapid expansion of eating away from home in recent years has increased the commercial use of spices. By the early 1990's, about 60 percent of domestically produced spices were used by the food processing and foodservice sectors, compared with 40 percent a decade earlier. Another trend in food manufacturing is the greater use of spice oleoresins (a concentrated form of spice) because they are easier to disperse in products. The American Spice Trade Association (ASTA) defines a spice as "any dried plant produce used primarily for seasoning purposes." This definition includes tropical aromatics (such as pepper, cinnamon, and cloves); leafy herbs of the temperate zone (notably oregano, basil, and sage); spice seeds (sesame, mustard, and caraway); and dehydrated vegetables (such as onion, garlic, and chile peppers).

Issue Date:
Sep 09 1995
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Record Identifier:
Published in:
Food Review: The Magazine of Food Economics, Volume 18, Issue 3
Page range:

 Record created 2017-12-19, last modified 2018-01-22

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