Consumer Trends

Disconnect between Americans and their food sources

With the majority of consumers out of touch with the agricultural experience, Americans seem to be split over whether food production is headed in the right or wrong direction. Farmers and ranchers are equally concerned about how food is grown and raised in the U.S. These beliefs are revealed in two national surveys, released during “The Food Dialogues,” a town hall-style discussion presented by the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) this past September.

  • 72% of consumers know little to nothing about farming or ranching
  • 70% of consumers say purchase decisions are affected by how food is grown and raised
  • 42% (more than two in five) Americans say the way food is grown and raised has improved in the last 10 years, while 37 percent say it has worsened. Both groups cite food quality and food safety as their reasons.
  • 83% of farmers/ranchers feel new ways of improving yields with fewer environmental inputs will have a major impact on farming/ranching in the future
  • One in five consumers who say food production has worsened in the last 10 years cite environmental impact as the top area of demise
  • Nearly all farmers and ranchers say that consumers have little to no knowledge about proper care of livestock or poultry


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