Turkey Prices Hit A 10-Year Low Ahead of Thanksgiving

Saving money on Thanksgiving dinner will either roll into additional holiday shopping, or consumers might "upgrade" their food selection to organic, natural or local items. ( Agweb )

Grocery shoppers are getting a gift ahead of Thanksgiving with the lowest turkey prices in the past 10 years.

Purdue University’s Jayson Lusk, a professor of agricultural economics, said turkey prices will average about $1.45 per pound this year, on par with or lower than the past several years.

“Agricultural commodity prices, like for corn and soybeans, have been low for some time and have remained low,” Lusk says. “These are the ingredients for a lot of food and are also used to make feed for animals, so that’s one of the drivers.”

While that’s good for consumers, it’s news farmers take with a bit of conflict. Lusk says the depressed national agricultural economy, compared with five years ago, is to blame for lower prices.

Food inflation remains low, Lusk continued, so consumers will discover savings on many Thanksgiving favorites:

  • Cranberries are 30% cheaper than five years ago at about 50 cents a pound.
  • The price of sugar is comparable to last year at 63 cents per pound.
  • Potatoes are about 60 cents per pound.
  • Flour is comparable to last year at about 50 cents per pound.

Low food prices can have ripple effects, Lusk adds. Savings on Thanksgiving dinner can be used for additional holiday shopping, or consumers might choose to “upgrade” to more expensive food choices, such as local or organic sources.

3 Top Turkey Facts

  • 46 million turkeys are eaten each Thanksgiving, 22 million on Christmas and 19 million on Easter.
  • 88% of Americans surveyed by the National Turkey Federation eat turkey on Thanksgiving.
  • In 2012, the average American ate 16 lb. of turkey.

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