Hold The Stuffing! Could There Be A Turkey Shortage This Year?


I’m all excited to cook a turkey for our family Thanksgiving this year. I even took a turkey cooking class this past weekend so I can smoke one on my wood pellet grill! But now, there is some bad bird news to pass along. You may need to prepare yourself for the great turkey shortage of 2022.

Yes, I know. You can’t stand another ‘shortage’ story. Well, hey…I don’t like writing them either! And this one is messing with my favorite holiday of the year, Thanksgiving! So what led to this shortage in birds? According to an article in the New York Times, turkey prices took a nose dive and crashed back in 2019. Many farmers simply stopped raising them. Then the pandemic hit, so there is still a shortage of birds. The Times reports another cause of the shortage is the avian flu. Around 3.6% of the turkeys in the U.S. have died from the disease. That might not sound like much, but it figures up to over 7 million turkeys!

So let’s say you are able to get a turkey for Thanksgiving. You can also bet that it will be a lot more expensive this year, too. Thanks a lot, inflation! Feed, fuel, and labor all cost more than last year, according to the Times. That plus drought conditions across much of the U.S. also isn’t helping the bird population.

Most experts say that you should still be able to get a turkey this year. It might not be the exact size you wanted, and it could cost you twice as much. You might just want to buy the next bird you see and throw it in your freezer! It just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without that tasty bird!

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