Farm Bureau annual survey finds Thanksgiving dinner should be cheaper than last year

Homemade Roasted Thanksgiving Day Turkey
A traditional Thanksgiving Day meal.

The pandemic and rules meant to limit large gatherings may mean smaller groups for dinner on Thanksgiving Day, but consumers also should notice cheaper grocery bills for the holiday feast.

The Farm Bureau’s annual Thanksgiving Dinner Cost Survey found the average cost of this year’s Thanksgiving feast for 10 should be $46.90 or less than $5 per person. This is $2.01 less or about a 4% decrease from last year’s average of $48.91.

“The average cost of this year’s Thanksgiving dinner is the lowest since 2010,” said John Newton, chief economist for the Farm Bureau. “Pricing whole turkeys as ‘loss leaders’ to entice shoppers and move product is a strategy we’re seeing retailers use that’s increasingly common the closer we get to the holiday.”

Lower turkey costs are behind the overall drop. The Farm Bureau said turkey costs less than last year, at $19.39 for a 16-pound bird, which is about $1.21 per pound, down 7% from last year.

The Farm Bureau said retail turkey prices are the lowest since 2010.

The shopping list for Farm Bureau’s informal survey includes turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, rolls with butter, peas, cranberries, a veggie tray, pumpkin pie with whipped cream, and coffee and milk, all in quantities to serve a family of 10 with plenty for leftovers.


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