FMI Analysis Shows Retailers’ Considerable Economic Impact
In tandem with the food industry’s push for tax reform, the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) has issued its annual “Grocery Industry Economic Impact” analysis. Undertaken with Brooklyn, N.Y.-based John Dunham & Associates, the analysis found that food retailers have a significant economic effect on federal and state economies, employing about 4.8 million workers and generating more than $363 billion in economic activity in 2016. Additionally, food retailers paid almost $168 billion in wages to associates across the store.
The analysis also found that the $153 billion the food retail industry pays in taxes greatly impedes grocers’ ability to hire new employees, raise the salaries of current workers, and meet the needs of the evolving consumer and marketplace. For every person employed by retailers, they pay nearly $32,000 in taxes.
Grocery’s low profit margins add to the tax burden, since the average food retailer nets just 1 percent in profit after taxes, overhead and other costs -- a steady trend for the past three decades.
“Food retailers offer a rewarding career path and a steady source of income for job-hungry Americans,” said Leslie G. Sarasin, president and CEO of Arlington, Va.-based FMI.” Simply put, all Americans — from employees and their families to customers — rely on the industry’s success. Our industry needs tax relief to continue setting the table for economic growth.”