NSSF study- Target Shooting in America: Millions of Shooters, Billions of Dollars

The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) is an industry-membership group that promotes the shooting sports and provides valuable research and information we can all use to make informed business decisions.

I recently came across their 2013 report “Target Shooting in America: Millions of Shooters, Billions of Dollars.”

Here are the Top 5 highlights:

1. American shooters spent $9.9 billion in 2011, which generated $3.3 billion in taxes.

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2. Top state ranked by spending, and by number of target shooters: California

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California had 1.7 million target shooters, with Texas right behind at 1.6 million.

3. “The average target shooter spend 22 days in the field or at the range in 2011. Nebraska target shooters spent the most time punching holes in targets with 38 days of participation each. Arizona and Oregon showed the second and third highest annual days of activity with 36 and 35 days per shooter, respectively.

4. Target shooting and hunting generated $110 billion in economic output and supported 866,339 jobs, which was nearly half of the two million jobs created during the economic downturn of 2011. 

5. Rifles and Handguns are the most popular shooting choices

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Here is a download link to the full report: http://www.nssf.org/PDF/research/TargetShootingInAmericaReport.pdf

Chris Cheng

Chris Cheng is History Channel’s Top Shot Season 4 champion and author of “Shoot to Win,” a book for beginning shooters. A self-taught amateur turned pro through his Top Shot win, Cheng very much still considers himself an amateur who parachuted into this new career.

He is a professional marksman for Bass Pro Shops who shares his thoughts and experiences from the perspective of a newbie to the shooting community. He resides in San Francisco, CA and works in Silicon Valley.



  • Drapetomanius

    3.4 Billion in taxes doesn’t make me feel any better; in fact it makes me cringe, but I understand that for a lot of people this is a sort of perverse selling point. The things that provide political leverage are always perverse.

    • Nicks87

      …So are you saying it’s a good thing?

      • dan

        Necessary Evil perhaps

  • Aaron E

    Originally, many of the taxes on firearms and ammunition were voted in by hunters to fund Conservation and Wildlife departments to help grow and maintain wildlife numbers. Unfortunately, the latest trend is to jack taxes on ammuntion and firearms simply as a means to make it harder for honest citizens to buy guns and ammo.

    • Cymond

      And those taxes made more sense when hunting was a bigger reason people owned guns, but more and more people are buying guns purely for recreation and defense. It seems a little silly that my AR-15 and Glock were taxed to provide for wildlife conservation efforts.

  • Blake

    Nice data, thanks.

  • jeff

    millions of shooters, billions of dollars and NO fricken 22 shells anywhere, makes sense..