Turkey Shortage Driving Up Thanksgiving Food Prices

November 16, 2022

Americans can expect roughly double-digit percentage increases in the price of most Thanksgiving food staples, like turkey, potatoes, stuffing and canned pumpkin.

The federal government estimates food prices will rise to 9.5% to 10.5% this year. Historically prices have risen only 2% year to year.

Wholesale turkey prices are at record highs after a particularly deadly strain of avian flu, which was first reported back in February, wiped out 49 million turkeys and other poultry in 46 states this year, according to the CDC.

As a result, U.S. turkey supplies per capita are at their lowest level since 1986, according to Mark Jordan, the Executive Director of Leap Market Analytics. 

Lower production and higher costs for labor, transportation and items are also driving prices, along with the lingering pandemic and other illnesses, rough weather and the war in Ukraine.

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