Surprising Map Of What Each State Buys The Most

By Amanda Postma - Aug. 6, 2020

Find a Job You Really Want In

When you break down what people spend their money on disproportionately, things start to get interesting. That’s why we looked into what is purchased by residents in each state. Our map shows items that residents in each state buy the most.

I mean, we’re talking anything from typewriters and faux fur to human blood and asbestos. Seriously, though.

Typewriters are a thing in the past.

Faux fur is so last year (or 20 years ago).

Human blood? Do we have a hoard of vampires somewhere?

And don’t even get me started on asbestos.

While we’re sure the people in these states all have good reasons for purchasing these items, it’s definitely fun to speculate about how the items are used.

By looking into each state’s product imports per capita, we found some fun, interesting products so keep reading to find out which state is wasting their money buying typewriters and which state is going to release vampires on the world.

Money, Money, Money

We probably could all agree that everyone could spend their money in better ways. But nonetheless, at least these products give us something fun to write about.

  • Since Idaho already has it’s potatoes, the people there are set when it comes to making hash browns and vodka. That’s why Idaho spends an abundant amount on wine.
  • With Texas being so close to the border, there have been talks in the past few years of building a wall. Now I won’t get into the politics of it all, but the state does import a lot of barbed wire.
  • You know how they say “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas?” Turns out they’re saying it for a reason. Nevada spends an absurd amount of money on importing tequila. The saying doesn’t mean you have a secret to keep the rest of your life; it just means you’re not going to remember anything from all the tequila! Now we know.
  • While Utah spending a lot of money on snow skis isn’t exactly surprising, the fact that it buys a lot of gold is. I mean, what is up with that? It’s not like you could walk into a gas station and pay for a bottle of water with a bar of gold.
  • While many states have a large need (want?) for guns, Georgia says ‘No, thank you. We’ll take the swords.’ Seems like someone is stuck in the past. But they’re not the only ones! Tennessee residents buy typewriters, New York is into faux fur as if it’s still 1920, and California residents purchase a lot of smoking pipes.
  • There are a lot of states with some concerning purchases. New Mexico residents buy a lot of nuclear reactors. Indiana is the state that buys human blood (if a state could hide vampires, it would be Indiana). Louisiana buys asbestos, and we’re really hoping they don’t put that in their Mardi Gras jungle juice. Delaware residents purchase an abundance of chloroform (steer clear!). And Alabama buys a lot of self-propelled artillery weapons. Scared yet?
  • We already thought Florida was a weird state, but then we learned that residents purchase a lot of coffee substitutes. How do people survive there? I’m not sure I trust anyone who doesn’t drink coffee. They don’t sound human to me. Other than it being the Sunshine State, I’d seriously question if Floridians were vampires.

How We Determined This

We set out to find what people in each state buys more of than others. This article and data is not for what each state buys the most of (because who wants to look at a map that says petroleum and machine parts over and over?), just what they buy a disproportionately large amount of.

Because we like to laugh, we set out to find some silly products and fun factoids. After all, the world needs to know that Illinois loves Anchovies, so we can be sure to never share a pizza with them.

To identify these products, we used combination of the US Trade Census and FlexPort.

From there, we looked at product imports per capita, to determine the overall dollars being spent. Since some states may buy or produce these products in state, it may not reflect total purchases. However, it’s a pretty good look.

Summary of What Each State Spends its Money on

Now that you’re aware of these weird purchases, we hope you don’t look at these states differently. Although, we wouldn’t blame you. We’ve included a full table for every state so you can see what every state spends its money on.

State Most Purchased Items
Alabama Artillery Weapons
Alaska Iron Structures
Arizona Gherkins
Arkansas Airplanes
California Smoking Pipes
Colorado Buffalos
Connecticut Silver
Delaware Chloroform
Florida Coffee Substitutes
Georgia Swords
Hawaii Spam
Idaho Wine
Illinois Anchovies
Indiana Human Blood
Iowa Corn Cereals
Kansas Engine parts
Kentucky Rear-View Mirrors
Louisiana Asbestos
Maine Ham Shoulder
Maryland Cinnamon
Massachusetts Lobster
Michigan Seats
Minnesota Live Geese
Mississippi Car Gear Boxes
Missouri Postcards
Montana Precious Metal Waste
Nebraska Bacon
Nevada Tequila
New Hampshire Blown Glass Sheets
New Jersey Snails
New Mexico Nuclear Reactors
New York Faux Fur
North Carolina Cigarette Lighters
North Dakota Sunflower Seeds
Ohio Telescopic Shaft Umbrellas
Oklahoma Textile Hosepipin
Oregon Railway Track Wood
Pennsylvania Chocolate
Rhode Island India Ink Drawing Pens
South Carolina Sewing Needles
South Dakota Beef
Tennessee Typewriters
Texas Barbed Wire
Utah Gold
Vermont Gasoline
Virginia Peanuts
Washington Peppermint Essential Oils
West Virginia Molybdenum
Wisconsin Sweaters
Wyoming Military Apparel

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating / 5. Vote count:

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

Never miss an opportunity that’s right for you.


Amanda Postma

Amanda Postma is a writer for the Zippia Career Advice blog with a focus on creating entertaining content to help you through your job search. She received her BA from the University Of Missouri-Columbia.

Related posts

Topics: Study