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Valentine's Day 2017: Gifts and Marriage in the USA Facts from the U.S. Census Bureau

Did you know that US chocolate and cocoa products in 2014 employed 42,043 people?


February 14, 2017

Expressing one's affection to another is a celebrated custom on Valentine's Day. Sweethearts and family members present gifts to one another, such as cards, candy, flowers and other symbols of affection.

Opinions differ as to who was the original Valentine, but the most popular theory is that he was a clergyman who was executed for secretly marrying couples in ancient Rome. In A.D. 496, Pope Gelasius I declared Feb. 14 as Valentine's Day.

Esther Howland, a native of Massachusetts, is given credit for selling the first mass-produced Valentine's Day cards in the 1840s. The custom continues today with even young children exchanging Valentine's Day cards with their fellow classmates.



Number of U.S. manufacturing establishments that produced primarily chocolate and cocoa products in 2014, employing 42,043 people. California led the nation with 151 of these establishments, followed by New York with 119.


Number of U.S. establishments that manufactured primarily non-chocolate confectionary products in 2014. These establishments employed 19,213 people. California led the nation in this category with 58 establishments.

$16.0 billion

The estimated value of chocolate confectionary product shipments for manufacturing establishments in 2015.

$10.1 billion

The estimated value of nonchocolate confectionery product shipments for manufacturing establishments in 2015.


Number of confectionery and nut stores in the United States in 2014.

$3.4 billion

The value of U.S. imports of chocolate and confectionery in 2015. Canada was the top source of U.S. chocolate imports that year with $1.3 billion.



The number of florist establishments nationwide in 2014. These businesses employed 61,170 people.

$131 million

The value of imports of bouquet cut flowers and buds in February 2016. Of that, the value of imports of fresh cut roses was $72 million-the highest category of flowers.



The number of jewelry stores in the United States in 2014. Jewelry stores offer engagement, wedding and other rings to couples of all ages. In February 2016, these stores sold an estimated $2.6 billion in merchandise.


The number of jewelry and silverware manufacturing establishments.

$6.7 billion

The estimated value of jewelry and silverware products shipped for manufacturing establishments in the United States in 2015.

"Please Be Mine"

29.7 and 27.8 years

Median age at first marriage in 2015 for men and women, respectively.


The overall percentage of people 15 and older who reported being married, except those separated.


The provisional rate of marriages per 1,000 people performed in Nevada during 2014. So many couples tie the knot in the Silver State that it ranked number one nationally in marriage rates. Hawaii ranked second with a marriage rate of 17.7.

2.1 million

The provisional number of marriages that took place in the United States (excluding Georgia) in 2014. That breaks down to about 5,800 a day.

Giving Love a Second Chance


Among people 15 and older who have been married, the percentage of men and women who have been married twice as of 2015. About 5.4 have married three or more times. By comparison, 75.5 percent of people who have ever been married have made only one trip down the aisle.

Looking for Love


The number of dating service establishments nationwide as of 2012. These establishments, which include internet dating services, employed 2,348 people.

sources: U.S. Census Bureau, National Center for Health Statistics


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