Turkey Prices Could Hit Record Highs This Thanksgiving

Consumers could pay up to 23% more, according to grocery chain CEO John Catsimatidis.

By Steve Huff • Nov 16, 2022

Burke/Triolo Productions | Getty Images

John Catsimatidis is the CEO of Gristedes Foods, a supermarket chain based in New York City. He has holiday-related advice for consumers: Treasure your Thanksgiving turkey this year because it will make a more significant dent than ever in your bank account.

In an appearance on Fox's Varney & Co., Catsimatidis told host Stuart Varney that grocery shoppers will see "the highest prices ever for turkeys, the highest price ever for your Thanksgiving dinner." There's a concrete reason that turkey prices are likely to rise by up to 23%, according to Wells Fargo:

The star of the Thanksgiving meal, and one of the biggest expense items, is forecasted to be 23% higher in price than last year in the fourth quarter. Turkey supplies will also be more limited this year due to continuing impacts of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza. Turkey prices jumped after the bird flu wiped out flocks earlier this year.

Although Wells Fargo notes that there will still be plenty of turkeys available, the per-pound price will still be relatively high.

Turkey isn't the only Thanksgiving mainstay taking a bigger bite out of shoppers' wallets, reports Fox Business. The same Avian Influenza outbreak has boosted egg prices by more than 32%, and butter and flour are also up. In addition, Wells Fargo's report indicates cranberries are more expensive this year and suggests old-fashioned canned cranberries might be the best option.

A trip over the river and through the woods to your grandmother's house will also cost you in 2022. Gasbuddy published a report Tuesday that said the national average price for gas on Thanksgiving Day will be "$3.68 on Thanksgiving Day – nearly 30¢ higher than last year, and over 20¢ higher than the previous record of $3.44 set in 2012." Even so, Gasbuddy says, "20% more Americans [are] planning to hit the road this year."

Wells Fargo suggests that the solution to mitigating Thanksgiving costs is finding a restaurant that serves holiday meals. According to the report's authors Courtney Buerger Schmidt, Brad Rubin, and Michael Swanson, Ph.D., dining out "may be a better value this year than one might expect." Why? "The price of a meal at a restaurant includes factors such as overhead and labor, but commodity ingredients are a smaller percentage of a restaurant's total costs."

Consumers who want to reduce costs can consider shopping at stores like Aldi's and Walmart — chains that have reduced prices to offset inflation by matching Thanksgiving-related expenses from previous years.

Steve Huff

Entrepreneur Staff

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