New results were just released by Gallup indicating the dining trends of Americans in 2012, over 20 years since the most recent polls of this kind were taken in 1987. Back then the average Americans spend on food per week was $108, significantly less than today’s average, which has climbed to $151.
Among those that participated in the study, spending greatly varied. Ten percent of the respondents spent $300 or more per week on food, while eight percent spent only $50 per week. Other surveys have revealed that Americans spend approximately ten percent of their income on food as of 2009, while more recent surveys have shown this percentage to be slightly higher.
Gallup also uncovered that 77% of those surveyed ate at home the day before the survey, 10% ate at a restaurant, six percent ate at someone else’s home, and two percent at work or school. Four percent surveyed did not eat dinner at all, and one percent said they ate somewhere else.
Young adults and those with higher incomes spend more than anyone else, averaging about $180 per week, while those with children spend approximately $30 more, and weekly food spending steadily declines with age. Overall men spend slightly more than women, and spending in the Midwest is slightly lower than elsewhere in the country.
At this point Gallup found little indication that rising food prices have affected consumer spending, but they believe that it may be a significant factor in the future. With inflation added to the equation, Americans are actually spending less on food, down from the $157 to $214adjusted range from the mid to late 1980’s.
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