average American meal


This article is widely cited on "eat local" websites, and is likely the source for the statement.

Related Question

QUESTION: Average American meal question

question / pregunta: 

"It is estimated that the average American meal travels about 1500 miles to get from farm to plate." With the recent spate of books, films, web sites related to food activism, this phrase seems like it's commonly repeated, but where does it come from? I found it on the Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture web site (, was mentioned in the film "Food, Inc." and Barbara Kingsolver's book "Animal Vegetable Miracle" but none of these sources provide further information. I'm presently taking a year away from graduate school to start a farm project with a few friends of mine, and i am writing a formal journal about the experience. A few of these entries will be specifically related to energy consumption, so it's important to me that i understand how the aforementioned statistics are figured...

Thanks so much...

The Organic Industry

Dr. Philip Howard (Assistant Professor of Community, Agriculture, Recreation and Resource Studies at Michigan State University) maintains information graphics on the structure of the organic industry. Looks like a good resource for other researchers and activists, as well as regular consumers like you and me. Who owns what? Who's merged with whom? And more! (Thanks to the Park Slope Food Coop's "Linewaiters' Gazette" for recently reprinting one of these graphics.)

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