con·​sump·​tion | \ kən-ˈsəm(p)-shən How to pronounce consumption (audio) \

Essential Meaning of consumption

1 : the act of eating or drinking something alcohol/milk/chocolate consumption = the consumption of alcohol/milk/chocolate Farms in the area grow food mostly for local consumption. [=they sell most of the food they grow to people who live nearby] See More ExamplesThis food is not fit for human consumption. [=not fit to be eaten by people] The doctor recommended that she reduce her consumption of sugar. [=that she eat less sugar]Hide
2 : the use of something (such as fuel) electricity/gas consumption = the consumption of electricity/gas The jet's high fuel consumption makes it expensive to operate.
3 : use by a particular group of people The governor said that the report was not for public consumption. [=it was not meant to be seen by the general public; it was intended only for a few people]

Full Definition of consumption

1a : the act or process of consuming consumption of food consumption of resources
b : use by or exposure to a particular group or audience The document was not intended for public consumption.
2 : use of something the jet's high consumption of fuel the consumption of electricity
b : a progressive wasting away of the body especially from pulmonary tuberculosis

Examples of consumption in a Sentence

The jet's high fuel consumption makes it expensive to operate.
Recent Examples on the Web For teens, being aware of the deception common on social media -- such as cosmetic filters and edits -- and changing your social media consumption can help. Kristen Rogers, CNN, 15 Sep. 2021 Think about subscribing to print publications to help put physical limits on your consumption and to remove your news intake from the vortex of social media. Helen Lee Bouygues, Forbes, 13 Sep. 2021 The Bitcoin network was estimated to consume about 67TWh of electricity in 2020, and its total consumption has already surpassed this in 2021., 13 Sep. 2021 That would be Kentucky QB Will Levis, who threw for four touchdowns last week against ULM but received more recognition for his bold produce consumption. Joseph Goodman |, al, 9 Sep. 2021 This version is primarily focused on increasing the density and bandwidth of RAM while lowering its power consumption. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, 8 Sep. 2021 Three weeks ago, a panel of 240 potential jurors were summoned to complete a 28-page questionnaire that focused heavily on their media consumption and knowledge of those involved with the case, as well as their own medical history. Taylor Dunn, ABC News, 7 Sep. 2021 The chips have a cult following, and fans like to get creative with their consumption. Jean Trinh, Los Angeles Times, 5 Sep. 2021 Jurors were given a lenghthy questionnaire and questioned about their consumption of news, among other issues. CBS News, 1 Sep. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'consumption.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of consumption

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for consumption

Middle English consumpcioun, from Latin consumption-, consumptio, from consumere — see consume

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Time Traveler for consumption

Time Traveler

The first known use of consumption was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near consumption



consumption function

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Statistics for consumption

Last Updated

20 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Consumption.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for consumption


con·​sump·​tion | \ kən-ˈsəmp-shən How to pronounce consumption (audio) \

Kids Definition of consumption

1 : the act or process of using up something (as food or coal)
2 : a wasting away of the body especially from tuberculosis of the lungs


con·​sump·​tion | \ kən-ˈsəm(p)-shən How to pronounce consumption (audio) \

Medical Definition of consumption

1 : a progressive wasting away of the body especially from pulmonary tuberculosis

More from Merriam-Webster on consumption

Nglish: Translation of consumption for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of consumption for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about consumption


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