With inflation impacting food prices and fuel for trucks delivering nearly everything, it’s not surprising that the annual American Farm Bureau Federation’s Thanksgiving Dinner survey shows this year’s meal will cost more than in 2021.
This is the 37th annual survey conducted by the nation’s largest farm organization. The sur-vey, with the help of 224 volunteer shoppers from all 50 states and Puerto Rico, computed the average cost of this year’s Thanksgiving feast for 10 to be $64.05, just under $6.50 per person. That’s an increase of 20% from last year’s average of $53.31.
A similar survey conducted in Vermilion County showed shoppers can find the same meal for a cost of $56.27. While this local meal is 14.3% higher than 2021, it is 12.1% lower than the national average.
“General inflation slashing the purchasing power of consumers is a significant factor contrib-uting to the increase in average cost of this year’s Thanksgiving dinner,” said AFBF Chief Economist Roger Cryan. General inflation has been running 7% to 9% in recent months, while the most recent Consumer Price Index report for food consumed at home reveals a 12% increase over the past year.
“Other contributing factors to the increased cost for the meal include supply chain disruptions and the war in Ukraine,” Cryan said. “The higher retail turkey cost at the grocery store can also be attributed to a slightly smaller flock this year, increased feed costs and lighter pro-cessing weights.” Cryan said the supply of whole turkeys available to consumers should be adequate this year, although there may be temporary, regional shortages in some states where avian influenza was detected earlier this year.