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How Many Calories do US Farmers Produce Per Person?

Farmers in the United States produce almost 4,000 calories per day per person. This is more than twice the average person's daily caloric need, and about 700 more calories per day than were produced in the 1980s. Out of that, the average American eats about 2,750 calories a day. Some of the rest is fed to animals or exported, but about a fourth of edible food is wasted.

More facts about food production in the U.S.:

  • More than 80 percent of corn and more than 90 percent of soybeans grown in the U.S. are genetically modified (GMO). This is more than four times the amount of GMO corn and soybeans produced in the mid-1990s.

  • Nearly 60 percent of all grains grown in the U.S. are fed to animals.

  • Farmers receive about half as much compensation per US Dollar (USD) as they did in the 1970s.
Discussion Comments
By anon310449 — On Dec 22, 2012

anon276552 is necessarily correct, unless the text is poorly worded and actually means that the aggregate US farmers produce 4,000 calories per American per day. But even that seems low, given how much we export.

By anon276552 — On Jun 24, 2012

I find it difficult to believe that farmers only produce enough food for less than two Americans each day. Looking at the figures statistically, there must be 155 million farmers in the US to support the rest of the population in the country (taking into account in 2005 only 7 percent of food consumed by people in the US was imported.)

Please note that the amount of farmers calculated is not taking into account exported food, food fed to animals or wasted only. Therefore I cannot conclude that each farmer produces 4,000 calories per day.

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