"This is the first study to reach across the value chain to define the full impact of the industry on the U.S. economy, from the farm all the way through retail and foodservice,” said PMA president and ceo Bryan Silbermann. "Our industry has substantial economic and employment impact in the United States, contributing significantly to the economies of every state and congressional district in the country.”
Overall, the study determined the U.S. fresh produce and mass-market floral industry accounts for more than $275 billion in direct economic output, and a total economic impact of more than $554 billion when its "ripple” effects are included. Every dollar of production value ultimately generates $16.75 of total economic value.
The study encompasses all levels of participation in the produce and mass market floral industry, including local farmers, organic production, farmers markets, conventional production, all types of grocery stores and restaurants, and everyone in between. It also accounts for the ripple impact of suppliers' businesses and worker spending.
"The results show our industry's total impact is 4.23 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP), and one-third of total U.S. animal and crop production,” said Kathy Means, PMA vice president for government relations and public affairs. "We account for 1.9 percent of all U.S. employment, providing the equivalent of 2.7 million full-time positions, and nearly $72 billion in wages.”
The study also details the industry's reach and impact by state, as well as for each congressional district, outlining wages, employment and economic output. The produce and mass-market floral industry contributed $1 billion or more in more than half of all congressional districts, with significant employment in many states -- 100,000 FTEs or more in five states and more than 50,000 in 15 states.”
The Battelle report offers critical new information on a previously little-studied industry, as well as business and policy value to all industry segments, from private companies to associations to government.
"The results have significant application to federal, state and local government efforts including lobbying, policymaking and program funding,” explained Means. "The statistics can be used by groups and individual companies in zoning, tax incentives, loan and grant requests, and business development proposals. Additionally, the employment information can help show the loss or creation of jobs resulting from industry influence.”
"Understanding and communicating our industry's impact on the economy is essential to our ability to create and influence good public policy, including agriculture and nutrition policy,” said Silbermann. "The information from this study can help every company in this industry achieve its business goals. And PMA is already planning to use it to advance the industry's policy interests at the federal and regional levels across the United States.”
PMA is developing a Webcast to summarize the study and its implications for industry members; it will be available via PMA's Web site at www.pma.com later this month. An executive summary is available free of charge; the full report, with or without the state and congressional district information, can be purchased. For more information, visit www.pma.com/economic-impact/.