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Montana Ag Network: Traditional Thanksgiving dinner costs a bit less this year

Montana Ag Network: Traditional Thanksgiving dinner to cost less this year
Posted at 9:59 AM, Nov 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-26 11:59:52-05

Thanksgiving celebrations might look a little different this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic with social distancing and perhaps even remote family get-togethers. One tradition that will continue is Farm Bureau’s 35th annual survey, which indicates the average cost of this year’s Thanksgiving feast for 10 is less than last year.

“This year, our volunteer shoppers across the country found that the average price for a Thanksgiving dinner for a family of 10 came in at $46.90, down about four percent from what we saw last year and the lowest level we’ve seen since 2010,” said American Farm Bureau Federation Chief Economist Dr. John Newton. “On the turkey side, the most important component of the meal, a 16-pound bird came it at $19.39. That’s down nearly seven percent from last year with an average price of $1.21 per pound.”

Montana Farm Bureau President Hans McPherson says the survey is impressive.

“I think this is just a good testament to how farmers have kept right on producing and ranchers have kept right on raising great cattle during this pandemic,” said McPherson. “We haven't shut down and quit. We've kept producing the safest, most affordable, most abundant food in the history of the world.”

In addition to turkey, foods that showed slight price declines include whipping cream and sweet potatoes. Foods showing modest increases this year included dinner rolls, cubed bread stuffing and pumpkin pie mix.

Farm Bureau’s classic survey menu has remained unchanged since 1986 to allow for consistent price comparisons.