Long Term Trends


One chart tells the story: after strong growth in the 1930s, '40s, and '50s, Stamp sales have flattened out. Since the Nixon era of the early 1970s, while dollar revenues (red line) have grown modestly at a 3.2% compound annual rate—this is entirely because Stamp prices moved up, in four steps, from $3 to $15—unit sales of Stamps (blue bars) have slowly declined.* Why the drop? The short answer is that fewer sportsmen are buying fewer Stamps, year in and year out, for whatever reason.

There's some recent good news for the Stamp and the MBCF: a recent uptick in unit sales, beginning with the 2009-10 Stamp year. Some speculate that the increased availability of the Stamp online as an e-Duck Stamp has contributed to the mini boom.

Nevertheless, Stamp revenues over the long haul haven't shown the kind of growth that almost every other aspect of the U.S. economy has. Even the five-fold increase in Stamp prices has not kept pace with the surge in consumer prices over the same 40-year period. (Remember, 1970 was the time when a quarter bought a gallon of gasoline.)

Don't let this valuable source of funds for conservation and land acquisition dry up. Drop something in Nature's tip jar, and buy a Stamp!


* This chart does not reflect data from the most recent Stamp price increase, to $25, effective 2015-2016.

The details of the data shown in the chart, supplied by the Federal Duck Stamp Office, are available.

Sources: Federal Duck Stamp Office, Bureau of Labor Statistics