6% to more than $1.1 billion in the 52 weeks ended June 13. Yet consumption was flat to down, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, with declines accelerating in the first half of 2004 as prices rose ever more sharply due to sluggish domestic production and low inventories.
Sales were down in the two previous years, most likely the result of fluctuating prices, not declining consumption. Supermarket sales fell 13.26%, to $1.13 billion, for the calendar year ended Dec. 29, 2002, and slipped 5.3%, to just over $1 billion, for the year ending Dec. 28, 2003.
Consumption does not appear to have been affected by low-carb dieting, despite butter's use as a spread on breads and rolls, and an ingredient in carbohydrate-rich cakes, cookies and pastas.
Dollar Sales Latest 52 Weeks Ended June 13, 2004; % Change; Dollar Sales Calendar Year Ended Dec. 28, 2003; % Change; Dollar Sales Calendar Year Ended Dec. 29, 2002; % Change