outdoor recreation

The Outdoors Industry Is Worth $373 Billion

Some big numbers about our economy have just been released. The outdoors industry represents a nice little chunk. 

If you hunt or fish in the U.S., you know how important these activities are to your way of life. However, have you ever sat back and thought about how much impact you buying all that gear actually has on the economy? Well, the numbers are out, dated back to 2016, and it's pretty shocking. To be honest, these numbers are much higher than I expected, and seem to be only gaining more momentum.

"The public will no doubt be surprised at the economic importance of this industry as we release prototype statistics measuring the impact of activities like boating, fishing, RVing, hunting, camping, hiking and more," said U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in a press release.

To break things down a little further, the press release dug into the actual numbers.

  • Off-road vehicles, RV's and other motorized vehicles were the biggest factor, representing $59.4 billion.
  • Boating and fishing represented $38.2 billion. This was actually a 4-percent increase from 2015.
  • Hunting and shooting activities represented $15.4 billion. However, this number has been on a downtrend for some time. Actual money spent on the act of hunting was valued at 60 percent of this number.
  • Bug spray, backpacks and accessories for all of the above grew at a 7.2-percent clip. This was valued at 35 percent of the total value of all outdoor activities.
  • Retail trade represented $81.7 billion of all outdoor economic activities.

Overall, it's easy to see why the outdoors industry has such a pull in politics. With an overall value of 2 percent of our economy, this number is only growing.

To see the rest of the numbers, check them out here.