Ag Economist: Consumers to See Turkey Savings

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(photo courtesy of our partners at WIBC-FM) (photo courtesy of our partners at WIBC-FM)
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A Purdue Extension agricultural economist says consumers can expect to pay less for their Thanksgiving turkeys this year, compared to 2016. Chris Hurt says abundant crop harvests both this year and last have kept farm prices low, which in turn keeps grocery store prices low. An analysis by Hurt shows prices for other holiday favorites, including dressing, dinner rolls, and pumpkin pie, should remain the same or only see a slight increase.

Hurt says grocery store prices are rising less than the general inflation rate. He adds while fruit and vegetable prices are running about 1 percent higher, cereal and bakery product prices remain unchanged. However, Hurt says consumers will see the biggest savings on their turkeys.

"Abundant grain crops mean low feed prices for the animal industry," Hurt said in a news release. "As a result, animal producers have been expanding production. Thanksgiving turkey supplies are higher this year. This will reduce the price farmers receive and enable consumer turkey prices to drop by an expected 2 to 4 percent."

In contrast to grocery store prices, Hurt says food prepared by others, such as ready-to-eat foods and food from restaurants, will be 2 to 3 percent higher this year. He adds the hurricanes earlier this year in Texas and Florida should have little impact on Thanksgiving shoppers.

"Even though both Texas and Florida are major food producers, the impact on prices should be small," said Hurt. "Texas vegetable production is concentrated in the Rio Grande Valley, not the eastern side of the state that was flooded. In Florida, major hurricane losses are reported for the citrus crop, but not the vegetable crops where many fields were unplanted at the time of the storm, according to USDA."

You can learn more from Hurt's analysis in the video below:

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