There is a truly healthy development occurring in tobacco country. It appears that farmers are pulling up tobacco plants with the falling market in order to plant a crop in higher demand: chick peas. Why? Hummus, my friend, thar’s gold in them golden dips. It is the ultimate healthy trade off and one of the more promising signs of the successful campaign against tobacco use.
I just had to share some pretty remarkable statistics.
Hummus continues to rise as a favorite new dip across the country. Now here is the wild stat: roughly 26% of Americans now say that they eat hummus and 70% are familiar with it. It was not that long ago when hummus was largely unknown. I loved it as a kid but my father spent a great deal of time in the Middle East as an architect and used to make it for us in the 1970s. Now, consumer spending on hummus has reached $1 billion a year — a growth rate of 18% a year over the past five years.
The switch is not only good for farmers for a more valuable crop but obviously reflects a decline in tobacco use that produces high social costs.