Five Key Facts Highlighting the Economic Importance of 5 de Mayo In the US

One-hundred million people celebrate this day in the US, eating, drinking and spending time with family and friends, the date which commemorates Mexico’s victory over the French in 1862

Fiesta mexicana.
May 05, 2023 | 10:50 AM

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Bloomberg Línea — Whether it is a pretext to celebrate something and get together with family and friends, 5 de Mayo (May 5) has become a significant day in the holiday calendar in the United States, much more so than in the country of origin of the date, Mexico.

While Mexicans celebrate the day with some civic activities in plazas, but it is not a public holiday, in the US millions of Latinos and members of other communities go all out to celebrate with food and drinks.

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How many people celebrate 5 de Mayo in the US?

  • 100 million: That’s how many people are estimated to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in some way, whether it’s preparing Mexican food or some snack, such as the ubiquitous guacamole. The figure is relevant because it indicates that not only Latinos (or even just Mexicans and Mexican-Americans) celebrate this day.

According to US Census Bureau data, there are some 62 million Latinos or Hispanics in the country. Of those, more than 60% identify themselves as Mexican or Mexican-American; that is, some 37 million people.

How much tequila, mezcal, and beer is consumed?

  • $6 billion is the value of agave-based beverage sales in the United States in 2022, such as tequila, mezcal and sotol and other agave-based spirits, which have positioned themselves strongly in the US market.

Data from the US Distilled Spirits Council show that the market has grown 500% in a decade, from $1 billion to $6 billion. In the days leading up to 5 de Mayo, sales of these beverages usually increase. As a Numerator poll reports, 62% of participants in a survey conducted in 2022 say that for 5 de Mayo they plan to buy alcoholic beverages. Of those, 48% buy imported beers (from Mexico, of course) and 44% buy spirits.

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This is reflected, says Flaviar, in the enormous volume of sales: $745 million in beer (more even than for St. Patrick’s Day), and 126 million liters of tequila.

How much avocado is consumed?

  • 151.2 million pounds (about 68.5 million tons) is the volume of avocados estimated to be sold in the country in the two weeks leading up to 5 de Mayo, when people prepare their purchases for the date, according to the Hass Avocado Board. That’s a lot of guacamole, the favorite dip in the US for events such as the Super Bowl or 5 de Mayo.

The figure could be higher if we take into account the four weeks prior to the day. Nielsen notes that avocado consumption in the four weeks prior to 5 de Mayo has increased by 27% over the past five years.

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What’s the value of avocado imports?

  • $3.26 billion. In 2022, US imports by value of avocado represented an increase of more than $500 million compared to 2019, when they totaled $2,761 million.

In other words, during the peak years of the pandemic, Americans increased their consumption of the fruit, importing it mainly from Mexico and Peru. To February 2023, imports amounted to $406 million.

How do Latinos spend the day?

  • 39% of US Latinos spend 5 de Mayo with family, according to the Numerator survey, while 27% opt to go out to restaurants or bars, 15% to attend or organize a party, and 16% attend a public event or festival, among other preferred activities for the day.
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