According to a study in the journal Nature Food, farmers worldwide receive barely a quarter of what consumers spend at the grocery store, and even less for food consumed outside the home.
The researchers collected data from 2005 to 2015 on 61 middle and high-income countries that cover 90 per cent of the global food economy.
They found that farmers receive 27 per cent on average of what is paid for foods consumers eat at home.
The study also revealed that 75 per cent of food that is consumed in the same country where it is produced.
For the other 25 per cent, the farmer share of consumer expenditures on imported foods is almost surely even less.
Cornell University’s Chris Barrett, senior author of the study said, ‘Most of the value addition in the global food economy is not on farms but rather is the processing, manufacturing, distribution and service activities closer to the consumer.’
However, farmers in fast-growing economies like China and India will earn more as their populations get richer, but their share of food spending is likely to shrink as demand for convenient consumption grows.