DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Shopping for Thanksgiving is underway for some families, but their receipts may be a bit higher than last year.
The cost of those turkeys is more expensive and there’s one main reason behind the spike.
Farmers say the bird flu that hit this past spring is the main culprit behind why the main attraction on the dinner table is costing consumers more.
And it’s not just turkey costs that are up.
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) found that the average turkey is $1.60 per pound, up nearly 30 cents from last year.
But the USDA also found that fewer people are interested in buying the turkey this year.
Reports found that nearly 8 million turkeys were lost to the bird flu and that has a major impact on production.
The illness also hurt production and raised prices for eggs and other poultry.
Officials with the Montgomery County Extension Office say consumers aren’t the only ones feeling the pain in their pockets, so are farmers.
“That’s a cost of production that they are going to essentially eat. They will not have that income coming in were supply and demand. We deal with the marketplace; it’s the same way with the corn and soy bean prices that now down. The farmers are now readjusting budget and planning for next year,” Suzanne Mills-Wasniak explained.
Officials say another option for families struggling to make that purchase is to reach out to food banks who have been giving out the turkeys for free.
As well, there are several organizations that offer a fully catered meal on Thanksgiving Day.