Turkeys can't fly, but their price is soaring ahead of Thanksgiving

2022-11-07 16:01:26 By : Mr. martin ku

CLEVELAND — Avian flu and the broken supply chain will cause your turkey to cost more than last year. Yahoo Finance says turkeys are costing 23% more this year.

At Wholesome Valley Farms, it's turkey season and they are busy getting the gobblers ready. Trevor Clatterbuck, the owner of Wholesome Valley Farms, tells News 5 they’ve been prepping for Thanksgiving while being hit with inflation. The biggest blow for him is the feed for the birds.

“Particularly for us that feed, non-gmo grains which are traditionally transitional organic feed, they've gone from $4.50 a bushel of corn to $8.73 just yesterday, so that's a big increase in the last few years,” said Trevor.

The effects don't stop there, according to the USDA. Six million turkeys nationwide have died of avian flu this year, which is nearly 14% of US production.

Adding to the shortage, the USDA also reports that the supply of frozen turkeys is down 24% compared to the 3-year average.

For farmers like Trevor, they haven't had bird flu cases, but the effects are still widespread.

“The biggest impact we've seen is that the price of the chicks from the hatchery has been more expensive, and the demand from the consumer is more expensive because supply is shorter,” said Trevor.

That triggers a domino effect.

“So obviously if our costs go up, they have to go to the consumer as well,” said Trevor.

So, the price increases at the farm, then at processing, then the birds make their way to the butcher.

“Just general labor increases to packaging plastics, I mean, let alone, just the safety gloves..." said Adam Lambert, owner and butcher at Ohio City Provisions. He said the cost of a case of nitrile latex gloves when from $50 a case before the COVID pandemic to about $174 a year later.

At Ohio City Provisions, Lambert is serving up everything local you can think of and selling it at a decent price.

“For us, we have the comfort of being our own farmer,” Lambert.

But even then, once their products make it through the production chain, the increase is inevitable. The good news is while some places may have fewer turkeys, the local spots aren't lacking

“If there's no food in the large grocery store there's still going to be food in farmers' markets and the small butcher shops,” said Lambert.

“We say that one of the benefits of having a local farmer is food security,” said Trevor.

So, if haven't yet, get your orders in so you can have turkey on the table at Thanksgiving.