Over the span of 2000-2076, the amount of money spent on food by the average American household increased from $5,158 to $7,203, which is a 39.6% increase in spending. But, for most of the U.S. population, food actually makes up a decreasing portion of their household spending mix because of rising incomes over time. Just 13.1% of income was spent on food by the average household in 2016, making it a less important cost than both housing and transportation.
Variations in food prices can still make a major impact on the population. For lower income households, food makes up a much higher percentage of incomes at 32.6% and how individual foods change in price can make a big difference at the dinner table.