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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Overview of the What We Eat in America Food Categories
  • What are WWEIA
    Food Categories?
  • How are they
    to be used?
  • What about other
    USDA food groups?
  • Files
     

The What We Eat in America (WWEIA) Food Categories provide an application to analyze foods and beverages as consumed in the American diet. Each of the food and beverage items that can be reported in WWEIA, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey are placed in one of the mutually exclusive food categories. This is done by sorting each food code contained in the Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies (FNDDS) into one WWEIA category. The focus of this categorization system is on grouping similar foods and beverages together based on usage and nutrient content.

  • This classification scheme includes approximately 150 unique categories.
  • Each category is assigned a 4-digit number and description.
  • Each FNDDS food code is linked to a unique category.
  • Categories contain discrete food items - no disaggregation into ingredients; e.g., pizza vs. grain, cheese, tomatoes, etc.

  • WWEIA Food Categories are intended for use with dietary intake data from What We Eat in America, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) and the USDA Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies (FNDDS).
  • A new version of the WWEIA Food Categories is produced for each 2-year release cycle of WWEIA, NHANES and FNDDS.
  • The categories are designed to be flexible and can easily be combined into smaller or larger food groupings as needed to address specific research questions.
  • The WWEIA Food Categories are used to produce data tables summarizing food and beverage intakes of the U.S. population.

The WWEIA Food Categories is one method for grouping foods. Other classification systems available include:

Food Patterns Equivalents Database (FPED)

Translates foods in the Food and Nutrient Database for Dietary Studies (FNDDS) into 37 USDA Food Patterns Groups defined by the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

Food Intakes Converted to Retail Commodities Database (FICRCD)

Translates foods in FNDDS into 65 food commodities at the retail level defined by USDA Economic Research Service.

FSRG-Defined Food Groups

Provides an application to analyze foods and beverages based on major food commodity groups and more specific subgroups.
  • 2009-2010
  • 2007-2008

Suggested Citation: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. 2013. What We Eat in America Food Categories 2009-2010. Available: www.ars.usda.gov/ba/bhnrc/fsrg

Suggested Citation: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. 2013. What We Eat in America Food Categories 2007-2008. Available: www.ars.usda.gov/ba/bhnrc/fsrg


Last Modified: 10/29/2013