USDA: Bioproducts support 4.6 million American jobs

Justin Maxson, United States Department of Agriculture deputy under secretary for Rural Development, unveiled on July 29, the 10th anniversary of the creation of the USDA’s Certified Biobased Product Label, an Economic Impact Analysis of the U.S. Biobased Products Industry. The report shows that the biobased industry generates substantial economic activity and jobs and has a “significant” positive impact on the environment.

“Biobased products are widely known for having a substantially lower impact on the environment compared to petroleum-based and other non-biobased products,” Maxson said. “Beyond being more responsible alternatives, these products are produced by an industry responsible for nearly 5 million jobs in the United States alone.”

According to the report, in 2017, the biobased products industry:

• Supported 4.6 million American jobs through direct, indirect and induced contributions.

• Contributed $470 billion to the U.S. economy.

• Generated 2.79 jobs in other sectors of the economy for every biobased job.

According to the report, biobased products displace approximately 9.4 million barrels of oil annually and have the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 12.7 million metric tons of CO2 equivalents per year.

Established in 2011 underneath USDA’s BioPreferred Program, the Certified Biobased Product Label is intended to spur economic development, create new jobs and provide new markets for farm commodities. By harnessing the powers of certification and the marketplace, the program helps purchasers and users identify products with biobased content and assures them of its accuracy. As of June 2021, the BioPreferred Program Catalog includes more than 16,000 registered products.

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