Low Turkey Supplies Likely To Push Holiday Meal Costs Higher

When it comes to the U.S. turkey sector, “About the last four years, we’ve seen production falling; being reflected in tighter supply of turkeys and lower stocks,” Much lower stocks according to USDA livestock analyst Shayle Shagam. He said a few years ago turkey producers were reporting low prices as their production was growing faster than demand. So, the industry gradually began to reduce output.  

The result?  

Now, stocks in cold storage, end of September this year, 17% below last year; and of course that’s leading to higher wholesale prices.

“Wholesale prices for frozen hen turkeys, which is what we track here at USDA, peaked in mid-September at about $1.44 per pound, which would be the highest level on record.”

At lest since 2005, when the USDA started tracking that price. Now, prices did climb a little bit last month; down to $1.33 per pound, but that’s still 16 cents more than October a year ago. Shagum said this could mean consumer will likely pay more for Thanksgiving turkey this year.

If you have a story idea for the PNW Ag Network, call (509) 547-1618, or e-mail [email protected]

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *