This report presents historical data on food consumption, prices, expenditures, and U.S. income and population. In 1997 each American consumed, on average, 81 pounds more of commercially grown vegetables the.n in 1970; 65 pounds more of grain products; 57 pounds more of fruit; 32 pounds more of caloric sweeteners; 13 pounds more of total red meat, poultry, and fish (boneless, trimmed equivalent); 17 pounds more of cheese; 13 pounds more of added fats and oils; 3 gallons more of beer; 70 fewer eggs; 10 gallons less of coffee; and 7 gallons less of milk. Retail food prices, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI), increased 2.6 percent in 1997. Food price inflation in 1997 was higher than the overall increase in the CPI for all goods and services (2.3 percent) for the third consecutive year. Americans spent $715 billion for food in 1997 and another $95 billion for alcoholic beverages. Away-from-home meals and snacks captured 45 percent ofthe U.S. food dollar in 1997, up from 39 percent in" 1980 and 34 percent in 1970. The percentage of disposable personal income spent on food declined from 13.8 percent in 1970 to 10.7 percent in 1997.


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