In the 1933 federal farm legislation, the concept of parity pricing for agricultural products was developed. Parity pricing sought an equality of exchange relationships between agriculture and industry or between persons living on farms and persons not on farms. The period between1909 – 1914, was chosen as the base for calculating parity prices because there seemed to be an equilibrium between the purchasing power of city and country during that period of history.*
The concept of parity pricing gives organic producers, buyers, and consumers a perspective on the relative value of organic commodities.
Current parity prices are included in a report entitled "Agricultural Prices" downloadable on a monthly basis from the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) Parity price information can be found in the current report as a table labeled "Parity Prices for Farm Products and Average Prices Received as Percent of Parity Prices, United States, with Comparisons".
The NASS will email the current report monthly. Click HERE to register for the service.
*Compiled from Parity Prices History: