Thanksgiving dinner to cost Texans more this year
TFB Thanksgiving Meal Report shows prices increased
(WACO, Texas)—A traditional, Texas-style Thanksgiving dinner for 10 will cost $48.85 this year, up $2.37 from a year ago, according to the special Texas Farm Bureau (TFB) Thanksgiving Meal Report.
The survey records the cost of 10 holiday staples—including turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce and pecan pie. The 2016 report shows the average cost of this year’s holiday dinner rose 5.1 percent from last year’s price of $46.48.
Turkey prices held steady, with a 16-pound frozen turkey ringing in at $19.52.
“The turkey is the centerpiece of a Thanksgiving meal, and the price didn’t increase,” said TFB President Russell Boening. “The turkey is oftentimes the largest expense in our Thanksgiving grocery basket, so it’s nice to not see that ring an increase at the cash register.”
Turkey production has rebounded in recent years, which has helped hold the price at around $1.22 per pound.
Pecans, a Texas staple, saw a significant increase, due in large part to this year’s weather. Shelled and halved nuts were up 17.29 percent, or $1.70 per pound, from 2015 to 2016.
“Mother Nature dealt many Texas farmers and ranchers a tough hand this year,” Boening said. “Most of the Lone Star State received much needed rainfall, but some areas faced significant flooding.”
That had an effect on many crops, including pecans. The wet spring, followed by a dry summer and wet harvest season, led to a shorter crop of Texas pecans.
“It’s supply and demand at this point. The weather had an impact on the overall Texas crop,” Boening said. “Pecans cost more because there are fewer available.”
Of the 10 items surveyed, cubed stuffing, fresh sweet potatoes, frozen pie shells, whipping cream and frozen green beans also saw an increase.
The price of jellied cranberry sauce didn’t show a change, while whole milk and brown and serve rolls showed a decrease.
TFB’s fourth quarter Grocery Price Watch survey, taken in conjunction with the 2016 Thanksgiving Meal Report, also indicated a slight increase for household staples. Results from the quarterly survey of 16 common food products increased from $45.78 in the third quarter to $46.80 in the fourth quarter of this year.
TFB’s Thanksgiving Meal Report and Grocery Price Watch prices were reported by 39 volunteer shoppers at grocery stores statewide from Nov. 3-10. TFB has released its Grocery Price Watch survey quarterly since March 2009.