In this exclusive report, we found a modest positive relationship between the decline in average consumption of margarine and the value of printing shipments.

It may not be the reason, but with a correlation coefficient of 0.493, there is a somewhat modest positive relationship between the per capita consumption of margarine and the decline in the value of printing shipments we saw in the 2000s. Yeah, we’re shocked, too. It’s always the things you don’t expect. But why would this be?

The first decade of this decade/century/millennium was a time of great change and tumult. The internet emerged as powerful communication medium and social force, while at the same time people were reassessing their dairy and non-dairy consumption options. And if the hold that Big Margarine had on a population that had bread that needed some form of buttering, well, all bets were off. And if people were willing to disrupt their breakfasts with alternate toast toppings, what makes anyone think they wouldn’t be as willing—or more so—to disrupt their relationship with print media? And it’s only a 50% correlation. I can’t believe it’s not better.

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