Food in America is affordable. In fact, between January 1 and February 3, 2008, the average American will have earned enough disposable income to pay for his or her food supply for the entire year, according to the DeKalb County Farm Bureau. As a result, the DeKalb County Farm Bureau and DeKalb County 4-H is celebrating February 3 - Feb. 9, 2008, as Food Check-Out Week.
The latest statistics compiled by the Agriculture Department’s (USDA’s) Economic Research Service indicate American families and individuals currently spend, on average, just 9.5 percent of their disposable personal income for food.
Applying the current statistic to the calendar year, it means the average household will have earned enough disposable income -- that portion of income available for spending or saving -- to pay for its annual food supply in just five weeks.
Not only is America’s food supply the world’s safest, but it’s also the most affordable. Food Check-Out Week tracks the amount of income needed by Americans to purchase food on an annual basis. In comparison to Food Check-Out Week, most Americans worked until mid-April to pay their taxes in 2007, according to The Tax Foundation. The high-quality, affordable food we enjoy is a product of our successful food production and distribution system, as well as America’s farmers retaining access to effective and affordable crop protection tools.
This week should hold meaning for most Americans. As food producers, we are concerned that some Americans cannot afford to buy the food they need, but we are proud of the role Tennessee farmers play in making our food supply more affordable for all.
DeKalb County Farm Bureau personnel and DeKalb County 4-Her’s will be in some of the local stores distributing information on these issues on February 5, 2008 from 3:00 p.m. until 4:00 p.m.