Writer: Martine Paris | Bloomberg
Nevertheless you slice it, Thanksgiving will cost more.
Hikes in flour and pastry prices hit record highs in October, US government figures showed on Thursday. The eggs jumped probably the most since 2007. Turkeys and other poultry without chicken increased by 17%.
It’s all a part of historic food inflation, which is hitting consumers as well, who’re also fighting sky-high prices on every thing from fuel to housing. The war in Ukraine is undermining global supply chains and the continued avian flu epidemic is decimating laying hens and turkeys. In keeping with Russell Barton, director of research firm Urner Barry, scarcity and rising prices could trigger a shift in shopping habits ahead of Christmas.
For buyers, “it might be a first-come, first-served” situation when individuals are replacing other proteins like ham, beef ribs and roasts, Barton said. Others switch to lighter foods like soup, salad, and pizza. Historically, many traditional menu items surged ahead of the vacation, based on research firm IRI Worldwide, which released a Thanksgiving sales and sentiment tracker.
As avian flu wreaks havoc on bird supplies in parts of the USA, Iowa Senator Charles Grassley and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar are pressing for more funding to mitigate the epidemic. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said last week that while it might be difficult to search out a 20-pound turkey in some locations because there was no time to grow them, he’s confident there might be turkeys available for cutting. “It might be smaller, but it’s going to be,” he said.
Butterball, America’s largest producer of turkey products, said it needed to boost prices for patrons after nearly doubling production costs. “We were affected by inflation and soaring grain costs,” said CEO Jay Jandrain in an interview this month. While the corporate doesn’t expect turkey shortages, “there might be no surplus left,” he said.
Nevertheless, there may be growing optimism in regards to the cooling of costs. US inflation slowed greater than anticipated in October, giving hope that the fastest cost growth in many years is declining.
– With the assistance of Michael Hirtzer, Maeve Sheehey, Leslie Patton and Daniela Sirtori-Cortina.
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