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November 8, 2012

Thanksgiving Dinner Costs Just a Bit More This Year

For more information on Newsline, contact: Kari Barbic, Media Specialist, American Farm Bureau Federation, karib@fb.org.

Americans will pay just a bit more at the grocery story for a turkey and all the trimmings to prepare a classic Thanksgiving Dinner this year, according to John Anderson, deputy chief economist at the American Farm Bureau Federation. AFBF’s Cyndie Sirekis reports.
Sirekis:Turkey will be the centerpiece of most Thanksgiving tables again this year, but we’ll pay just a bit more to tuck into the feast, according to John Anderson, deputy chief economist at the American Farm Bureau Federation. Anderson explains the results of Farm Bureau’s 27th annual survey.
Anderson:According to the results of our survey, the cost of a Thanksgiving Dinner, 10 servings, will be forty-nine dollars and forty-eight cents, that’s up about a little better than half a percent from a year ago. So a fairly modest increase.
Sirekis:The average retail price for turkey played a big part in the relatively small price increase shoppers will see for the meal this year.
Anderson:If you look across the basket there were a few items up, a few items down. Overall the one that probably moved the most was the turkey. That’s the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving dinner so it has a lot of weight in thetotal cost. Turkey price was up about 3 percent from a year ago. No other real big movers in the basket as far as an increase. Some of the dairy product items were down similar to the amount that turkey price was up. We had for instance whipping cream down about 3 percent in terms of its price but no other real major movers.
Sirekis:Thanksgiving Dinner is something many people look forward to all year, even more so when the feast doesn’t take a big bite out of their wallets.
Anderson:Thanksgiving dinner is very affordable in this country. We’re talking about a meal of 10 servings here and the total cost is around forty-nine and a half dollars, that’s less than five dollars per serving. Very affordable for what is obviously a very special meal.
Sirekis:Cyndie Sirekis, Washington.
Sirekis:We have two extra actualities with John Anderson, AFBF’s deputy chief economist. In the first extra actuality Anderson talks about how Farm Bureau conducts the survey. The cut runs 16 seconds, in 3-2-1.
Anderson:Farm Bureau calculates the national average Thanksgiving Dinner price from the results of surveys that are sent in by volunteer shoppers. We have members around the country who go out into their local store and report the prices that they find there on this marketbasket of items. They send those to us and we summarize what we get in.
Sirekis:In the second extra actuality Anderson talks about turkey supply and demand. The cut runs 19 seconds, in 3-2-1.
Anderson:Turkey supplies in cold storage are around 5, 6 percent higher than they were a year ago so we’ve had strong production. We’ve got more than we had last year in cold storage. Really I think the fact that we’ve seen an increase in price at all comes more from the demand side. Competing meats are relatively more expensive and so that helps turkey demand and we’ve seen a price response.
Sirekis:Newsline is updated Mondays and Thursdays by 5pm Eastern time. Thank you for listening.

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