Area residents who are heading to the grocery store this weekend to stock up for next week’s big feast will be pleased to hear they may actually be paying less to feed the family for Thanksgiving. Christopher Pudenz, an economist for the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, says they figured the average cost to prepare a traditional turkey dinner with all of the fixings for a family of ten at the table.
The survey found the biggest price fluctuations were in 12-ounce bags of cranberries and half pints of whipping cream, which dropped 18% and 23% respectively, while a 12-pack of dinner rolls and pumpkin pie filling saw modest price increases of between 3% and 4%.
Other items on the menu for the survey include: frozen pie crusts, whole milk, frozen peas, sweet potatoes and stuffing. Overall food prices have risen about 25% since the beginning of 2020, according to Pudenz, who says inflation has continued to take a significant toll. Plus, he says, bird flu was a key factor in the price shifts.
While there have been more outbreaks this fall, he says they haven’t been nearly as severe. Iowa is the nation’s seventh largest turkey producer with an estimated 12-million birds raised here each year.