While we're spending less money on groceries than decades ago, what other prices are we paying because of it?
A series of infographics from NPR's Planet Money shows that Americans are spending less on groceries than they did 30 years ago. Great! Advances in food technology, production and distribution drove the prices down for everyone, right?
While this should be a good thing, it's actually not if you look at the breakdown of what we're eating. The majority of spending is now going to processed food, which jumped from 11.6 percent in 1982 to 22.9 percent of all food purchases in 2012.
While efficiencies in some aspects of our food system (meat) has lowered prices, I would also argue that campaigns such as "Beef, it's what's for dinner" and "Pork, the other white meat" have driven such foodstuffs mainstream. And at what ultimate cost? Our environment and health is now at stake.
This next infographic is mind-boggling. Notice, again, how the healthiest options are the most expensive. Way to go, Big Ag lobbyists.
It's clear that the losers in this scenario, beyond grapefruit and peppers, are us.
What do you think about these numbers? Leave a comment.