Despite fears turkey prices would skyrocket due to this spring’s bird flu outbreak, U.S.D.A. economist Annemarie Kuhns says turkey prices have actually dropped in the past week and are only up a few cents a pound from a year ago.
“This is the main attraction for your Thanksgiving meal and retailers tend to offer deep discounts on their turkeys to bring people into the store,” Kuhns says.
Iowans may find frozen turkeys selling for as low as 59-cents a pound, however, many of those beloved side dishes may cost more to prepare. Sweet potato prices are up nearly 28 percent from a year ago while russet potatoes are up more than eight percent.
Egg prices are up significantly from 2014, in large part, due to the bird flu outbreak. She says a dozen eggs will run you a full dollar more. “On average, $2.97,” Kuhns says. “They cost $1.97 at this time last year.” Kuhns says the price of green beans, milk and cranberries are all down this year. Iowa remains the nation’s number-one hog producer and Kuhns says now is a good time to buy ham as prices are down a half-a-dollar.
“Per pound ham prices are about $4.13 this year,” she says. “Last year, they cost about $4.63.” Overall, it’s estimated the Thanksgiving dinner will cost about six-percent more than last year’s big meal.