The cost of this year’s Thanksgiving meal won’t knock the stuffing out of consumers’ pocketbooks.
Increasing 1 percent from last year, a traditional Thanksgiving dinner is expected to cost about $49.48, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation. The bureau surveyed the price of staples such as turkey, potatoes, and stuffing, to determine the meal’s average price.
The most costly item on the survey was Turkey, which was $22.23 for a 16-pound bird. That price was 66 cents higher than last year.
“It’s not too bad from where we were last year,” Jim Chakeres, executive vice president of the Ohio Poultry Association, said. “It’s primarily due to an increase in demand and costs on the farm were higher.”
Corn and feed prices increased this year, and those costs are reflected in the price of poultry, Mr. Chakeres said. The state’s turkey flocks eat more than 4.4 million bushels of corn each year.
Ohio ranks ninth in turkey production across the country, and processed 4.6 million turkeys with a value of $177.6 million in 2010.
The slightly higher price of turkey and trimmings hasn’t stopped shoppers from flocking to The Andersons Market in Sylvania. Bob Staller, the store manager, said the market was packed Sunday with shoppers who were stocking up for the holiday.
“In produce, what we see right now more than ever is sweet potatoes and yams are a hot item,” he said, adding that people also are purchasing dips, pumpkin pies, or placing orders for a ready-cooked meal that can be picked up at the store.
The store hopes to have 150 orders for its ready-cooked meal, which includes a turkey and up to eight pounds of different side items, he said. This is the first year the store has allowed customers to customize meals instead of offering one option.
“Some of them are for the day after Thanksgiving, people that are visiting relatives and they’re coming home and they still want their family dinner themselves,” he said. “There’s probably 15 orders for after Thanksgiving.”
A ready-cooked dinner runs $59.99 at The Andersons.
People also have been prepping for the holiday at Meijer locations across the area. Ready-cooked dinners are popular at the store, said Christina Fecher, a spokesman for the store.
Meijer is open Thanksgiving day and should have everything to pull off a classic dinner, Ms. Fecher said.
Ready-cooked dinners are $47.99 at the store, with the option of turkey or ham as the main course.
For people looking for a turkey that’s not frozen, Belleville Meat Market in Bowling Green is selling fresh ones. James Belleville, who owns the market with his brother, said the birds are chilled, never frozen, which results in a more succulent dinner.
Demand has been about average this season, and most people are purchasing turkeys that weigh between 10 pounds and 26 pounds.
“A lot of people around Thanksgiving time like a fresh turkey, they stay a little moister,” he said.
Contact Kris Turner at: firstname.lastname@example.org or 419-724-6103.