Two Indiana turkeys are set to meet President Biden Friday when he officially pardons them from the Thanksgiving dinner table. Peanut Butter and Jelly serve as the National Thanksgiving Turkey and alternate. Once they receive the designation in Washington, they will live out their lives at Purdue University.
Purdue says the turkeys will live at Purdue’s Animal Science Research and Education Center, where they will reside in a separate enclosed indoor setting with access to a shaded grassy area.
The school says educating students will also be a primary focus in the coming months.
“The turkeys will provide a great resource for students to learn more about the poultry industry and about policies that impact poultry production,” said Greg Fraley, Purdue Chair of Poultry Sciences.
The turkeys were raised by southern Indiana turkey producer Andrea Welp. The turkeys will be presented by Phil Seger, who is the 2021 National Turkey Federation chairman. He is also the vice president of live turkey operations for Jasper-based Farbest Farms Inc.
According to the NTF, the annual presentation at the White House signals the unofficial beginning of the holiday season. The organization says the ceremony also highlights the contributions of America’s turkey growers as well as the important role of agriculture in modern America.
Indiana is the fourth largest turkey producing state in the nation.
Purdue will officially welcome the celebrity turkeys November 29 on the Memorial Mall.