NATIONAL NEWS

Thanksgiving dinner will be less expensive this year. You can thank turkeys (and cooling inflation)

Nov 15, 2023, 3:09 PM

A Thanksgiving meal of twelve classic items for 10 people will cost $61.17 on average – a 4.5% dr...

A Thanksgiving meal of twelve classic items for 10 people will cost $61.17 on average – a 4.5% drop from last year’s record high average of $64.05, according to a new survey from the American Farm Bureau Federation. Mandatory Credit: (Tetra Images/Tetra images RF/Getty Images)

(Tetra Images/Tetra images RF/Getty Images)

A Thanksgiving meal of twelve classic items for 10 people will cost $61.17 on average – a 4.5% drop from last year’s record high average of $64.05, according to a new survey from the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) on Wednesday.

While this year’s Thanksgiving dinner is more affordable compared to last year, it is still up 25% from 2019, underscoring price increases since the pandemic.

Tuesday’s Consumer Price Index report showed prices for food rose by 0.3% in October from the previous month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Food prices were up 3.3% from the same month a year ago.

But you can thank turkeys for the lower meal cost this Thanksgiving. The dinner’s centerpiece and most expensive item – a 16-pound turkey – costs $27.35 on average, down 5.6% from last year. And the AFBF says prices of turkeys are expected to drop further.

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) told CNN that with Thanksgiving now one week away, promotions for turkeys have reached their peak and that prices will be further reduced due to these discounts. The USDA says controlling the spread of avian bird flu also helped lower prices.

An annual report by Wells Fargo found the industry added 2% to 3% more birds into barns to boost the Thanksgiving supply. A drop in input costs also helped, like the cost of refrigerated trucks to move supply around the country, according to Michael Swanson, chief agriculture economist with Wells Fargo Agri-Food Institute.

“Traditionally, the turkey is the most expensive item on the Thanksgiving dinner table,” Veronica Nigh, senior economist at the AFBF, said in a statement. “Turkey prices have fallen thanks to a sharp reduction in cases of avian influenza, which have allowed production to increase in time for the holiday.”

Whipped cream, cranberries and pie crusts also saw drops from last year, with a half pint of whipping cream costing $1.73 on average, a 12-ounce bag of fresh cranberries coming it at $2.10 and two frozen pie crusts retailing on average for $3.50.

Just a few items in the Thanksgiving meal rose in cost this year, including dinner rolls, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie mix, carrots and celery, the AFBF said.

“While shoppers will see a slight improvement in the cost of a Thanksgiving dinner, high inflation continues to hammer families across the country, including the nation’s farmers,” Zippy Duvall, president of the AFBF, said in a statement.

But Midwesterners will have access to the most affordable meal items, totaling $58.66 this year. The Northeast has the most expensive meal price at $64.38 for the 12-item basket.

The national average for the Thanksgiving meal was calculated by checking prices in all 50 states and Puerto Rico from November 1 to 6.

AFBF volunteer shoppers, who checked prices in person and online at grocery stores, looked for the best possible prices without promotions or deals. The bureau has conducted the annual survey using the same menu since 1986.


The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

KSL 5 TV Live

National News

Iowa guard Caitlin Clark reacts to fans during an Iowa women's basketball team celebration, Wednesd...

Doug Feinberg, The Associated Press

Iowa star Caitlin Clark makes surprise appearance on ‘Saturday Night Live’

The Iowa star made a surprise appearance on “Saturday Night Live” during the show's “ Weekend Update ” segment.

6 hours ago

Congressional leaders from both parties still remain at odds on how to pass additional Israel fundi...

Michelle Shen and Melanie Zanona, CNN

Congressional leaders at odds over Israel aid next steps, conservatives issue warning to Speaker Johnson

Congressional leaders from both parties were quick to condemn Iran’s retaliatory strikes on Israel this Saturday but still remain at odds on how to pass additional Israel funding in wake of the attacks.

12 hours ago

This image released by A24 shows Kirsten Dunst in a scene from "Civil War." (Murray Close/A24 via A...

Lindsey Bahr, The Associated Press

‘Civil War’ declares victory at box office

Alex Garland’s provocative “ Civil War ” didn’t only ignite the discourse. The film also inspired audiences to go to the cinemas this weekend where it surpassed expectations and earned $25.7 million in ticket sales in North America, according to studio estimates Sunday.

13 hours ago

Tyrese Simmons, the man accused of firing into a Dallas apartment and killing a 9-year-old girl in ...

Robbie Owens, KTVT via CNN

Rapper accused of fatally shooting 9-year-old girl could get plea deal

Tyrese Simmons, a man accused of firing into a Dallas apartment and killing a 9-year-old girl in a feud with another rapper, could get a plea deal.

14 hours ago

U.S. President Joe Biden speaking on April 12....

MJ Lee and Kevin Liptak, CNN

Biden tells Netanyahu US will not participate in counter-strike against Iran

President Joe Biden and senior members of his national security team, seeking to contain the risk of a wider regional war following a barrage of Iranian missiles and drones directed toward Israel, have told their counterparts the US will not participate in any offensive action against Iran, according to US officials familiar with the matter.

17 hours ago

FILE - In this July 20, 2017 file photo, former NFL football star O.J. Simpson reacts after learnin...

Associated Press

Executor of O.J. Simpson’s estate plans to fight payout to the families of Brown and Goldman

The executor of O.J. Simpson’s estate says he will work to prevent a payout of a $33.5 million judgment awarded by a California civil jury nearly three decades ago in a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the families of Simpson’s ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman.

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Thanksgiving dinner will be less expensive this year. You can thank turkeys (and cooling inflation)