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Thanksgiving meals will cost you more in 2021

According to the Farm Bureau’s 36th annual Thanksgiving survey, your turkey day meal will cost you an extra 14% this year.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture found sales on turkeys started later this year so if you’re still shopping for your bird you might get a good deal. But will you still pay more at the grocery store overall? Let’s Verify.

Our sources:
U.S. Department of Agriculture
American Farm Bureau Federation

According to the Farm Bureau’s 36th annual Thanksgiving survey,  your turkey day meal will cost you an extra 14% this year.

“This is certainly the largest increase we’ve seen in the history of the survey,” said Farm Bureau spokesperson Bailey Corwine.

So, what does that mean for your wallet?

Here’s what the data tells us: A dinner for 10 with plenty of leftovers factored in costs $53.31 this year, compared to $46.90 in 2020. That’s $6.41 more per person.

According to the USDA Turkey Market Report, the price for a whole frozen turkey is up 20.2% from last year, estimated at about $1.35 a pound.

The Farm Bureau agrees, that turkey is still going your biggest ticket item, gobbling up 45% of the cost of your whole meal.

The Farm Bureau developed a comparison shopping list after dozens of volunteer shoppers hit stores nationwide between October 26 and November 8. You’ll pay about 10-50 cents more for most staple items like rolls, cranberries and sweet potatoes. 

There is one silver lining: stuffing is cheaper this year, down 52 cents.

“Inflation in the U.S. economy at over 6.2% is certainly adding to cost of all products in US economy, not just food products,” explained Corwine. “Once the pandemic began we saw a significant shift in more consumers eating a larger share of their food at home versus away from home that has an impact on food prices.”

Food insecurity has also increased since the pandemic. According to Feeding America, the nation's largest food relief organization, nearly 42 million Americans don’t have enough to eat. Thankfully, that’s where community organizations and churches help with several turkey giveaways. 

Find out where you can still get a turkey in the District

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