Farmers: The Thanks They Get

The annual report on the “farmers’ share” of retail food spending shows about 16 cents on the dollar goes into the farmer’s pocket. The rest supports processing, distribution, marketing, and other non-farm expenses.

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If you’d like your Thanksgiving meal to support American commercial farmers, you better be prepared to eat some pumpkin pie. And we mean a lot of it.

The National Farmers Union has released its annual “farmer’s share” report, which details the share of the retail price of food that goes to the farmers who produced it.

You’d have to buy about 12 dollars’ worth of pumpkin pie filling to put a dollar in a farmer’s pocket, the report says. That’s enough filling for about four pies.

But you’d have to eat even more mashed potatoes for a farmer to earn a buck. The farmer’s share of instant potatoes’ retail price of $3.90 is 11 cents, half as much as the farmer’s share for pumpkin pie filler. (Editor’s note: We’re not advocating serving instant mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving dinner, just reporting the facts.)

Overall, farmers earn about 16 cents for every dollar the consumer spends, according to the report, which is based on U.S. Department of Agriculture data from September.

Farmers fare better with crops like green beans, carrots, apple cider, turkey, and to a lesser extent, beef.

Stuffing, bread, and carbonated beverages earned farmers the least share of retail food spending.

 

Topics: Economy
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