December 13, 2007

Hunters, Shooters to Top $4 Trillion in Lifetime Spending

Forty million Americans today are active in shooting sports and hunting. During their lifetimes, the total retail value of their recreational activities will top $4 trillion, projects the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), a nonprofit trade association for the firearm industry.

The giant figure, based in NSSF-commissioned research on average lifetime spending by hunters and shooters, illustrates the economic incentive behind efforts to recruit and retain participants.

"Every hunter and sport shooter is a tremendous asset to the firearm industry, but also to the travel industry, conservation agencies, rural economies, even the agriculture industry, since fee-hunting now provides critical revenue for farmers and ranchers," said Doug Painter, president of NSSF.

NSSF's study looked at hunters and shooters' expenditures from age 16 to 75.

Researchers found the average lifetime outlay for firearms, ammunition and other gear totals $20,219 per person. When purchases for licenses and lodging, food and fuel, magazines and meat processing, dues and contributions, and other associated items are added, the average lifetime grand total rises to $109,568 per person.

"Multiply $109,568 by 20 million hunters and 20 million shooters, and the cumulative retail value¯assuming we maintain those participation levels¯could actually reach $4.3 trillion," said Painter.

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