Pizzanomics popular pick on university course menu

Pizza is huge business — driving 10% of food service sales nationally. More than 9 out of 10 Americans say they consume pizza regularly.

It's no surprise, says the Belleville News Democrat, that universities are offering more courses based on "pizzanomics," and the latest example is the brainchild of an assistant economics professor at McKendree University in Southern Illinois near St. Louis. "Special Topics — Economic Analysis of the Pizza Industry" is a 300-level course taught by Eric Abrams. Abrams and his students discuss weighty topics like the fluctuating prices of commodities used to make pizza and the lobbying power of pizza chains on legislation. But the professor's passion is fueled by his experiences as a pizza chef as much as his academic training. "Because I like to make pizza, I find I often talk about it, using it as an example in my other classes,” Abrams says. “It seemed natural to combine the two and make a class about the economics of the pizza industry.” Abrams is happy with the interest level in the subject matter reflected in the 11 enrollees for this fall's debut class. He expects to use plenty of pie graphs and actual pizza pies to illustrate the state of the industry.  

Read more about pizza's growing prominence on college menu boards.