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Datasembly is uniquely positioned to provide insight to the actual prices of popular Thanksgiving products because we collect the price, promotion and assortment of every product, in every store, nearly every day. This means we know what customers are actually seeing in the brick and mortar stores as well as online.  These are actual prices, not estimations or forecasts, so let’s talk turkey. 

This year’s Thanksgiving dinner undoubtedly will be more expensive than 2021. The average Thanksgiving dinner for a family of 8-10 will cost consumers 17.8% more this year than last year. This increase is the result of rising prices of several Thanksgiving staples across various brands, especially the star of the show, the Thanksgiving turkey. Whether you are purchasing a frozen or fresh whole turkey, you will pay more this year when compared to last year.

Prices for frozen turkey have gone up on average 11% YOY and fresh turkey has increased 19%, when comparing mid-October to mid-November time frame. That being said, there’s been a significant increase in promotional activity for frozen turkey during the last two weeks of October that has kept increases to 6-8%; fresh whole turkey saw almost no promotional activity. Frozen turkeys reached the lowest average prices last week, but last year, we didn’t see the lowest prices until the week of 11/14/2021. So if there is a time when consumers should purchase their frozen turkey, it’s now!

While the average increase is 11% there are states that have experienced much higher and lower variances. Hawaii saw the largest increase at 46%, and North Dakota’s average price for frozen turkey actually decreased by 22%. There are six additional states where average prices declined - Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, New Mexico and Wyoming.

Prices for frozen turkeys also varied by different urban/rural segments (as defined by the National Center for Health Statistics). Looking at the same time period (mid October to mid November) YOY prices for whole frozen turkey in large central metro areas were up 13%; however prices only increased by 1% in non-core rural areas. 

Datasembly reviewed whole frozen and fresh turkey products that appeared in at least 100 locations across the United States.  We then identified 252 unique whole turkey products at 16 different retail banners, and the conclusion for most is that Thanksgiving this year will undoubtedly gobble up more of consumers’ money than it did last year. (sorry, couldn’t resist).

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