Food Industries' Vulnerable Input Purchases via Exposure to Upstream Industries and Labor Occupations

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About the dashboard

This dashboard characterizes the vulnerability of input purchases for each food industry within each U.S. state. It teases out the inputs needed for different food industries, provides the share of the total cost of upstream inputs and labor, and evaluates the risk of an industry based on a diversity score. The score ranges from a value of zero to one, with higher scores indicating less vulnerability.

A higher diversity score means that intermediate input purchases are evenly spread across upstream industries. A lower diversity score means that intermediate input purchases are concentrated in a few upstream industries. The average diversity score is 0.85 across all states and food industries.

The dashboard shows the total dollar amount of vulnerable input purchases for select food industries, and further breaks that down into (i) intermediate inputs and (ii) labor inputs. Within each input category, users can also see the respective upstream industries and labor occupations that are a source of input purchase vulnerability.

The dashboard should help executive decision-makers and policymakers to understand and think about the vulnerabilities of food industries from an input purchase perspective. A shock to any of the upstream industries or labor groups in the dashboard can result in cascading effects, hence potentially affecting food production and food security within a region or the country.

The dashboard is based on a recent study by Ahmad Zia Wahdat and Jayson L. Lusk from the CFDAS and the Department of Agricultural Economics at Purdue University: The Achilles Heel of the U.S. Food Industries: Exposure to Labor and Upstream Industries in the Supply Chain. (November 5, 2021).

Available at SSRN:

How to use it

Select one or more industries and states for customized information. In the Decomposition Tree Diagram, you can click on either (i) intermediate input or (ii) labor input to get a further breakdown. You can also hover your mouse pointer over the Decomposition Tree to see the percentage share of each industry or labor occupation in Total Vulnerable Input Purchases.

Variable definitions

Diversity Score: A food industry’s diversification of intermediate input purchases across upstream industries is measured via the Simpson Diversity Index. In the context of upstream purchases, a score of one represents infinite diversity of purchases and zero, no diversity.

Exposure: Out of all upstream industries (or labor occupations), a food industry is exposed to a given upstream industry (or labor occupation) if the purchase value of intermediate inputs (or labor input) is greater than one standard deviation above the mean (see the aforementioned study for more details).

Data source

This dashboard uses 2019 data from EMSI – economic modeling.

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