The Classic Arizona Thanksgiving Dinner Dramatically Drops Nearly $20 This Year, or Down 28%.
ARIZONA, November 15, 2023, - As Arizonans sit down at the Thanksgiving table to dig into the traditional feast this year, the turkey dinner with all the trimmings will cost $51.89 for an Arizona family of 10, or around $5.19 per person. This is an overall decrease of $19.99 or 28% less than the 2022 Arizona Thanksgiving meal ($71.88). In comparison, the American Farm Bureau’s national market basket for a Thanksgiving dinner meal for 10 this year is $61.17 or $9.28 more than Arizona’s Thanksgiving meal. But even the national market basket is down $2.88 or 4.5% compared to last year’s national average of $64.05.
Without factoring in-store coupons or specials (priced prior to store specials), the cost of a 16-pound turkey purchased in Arizona this year was $18.32, or $1.14 per pound, which reflects a decrease of $0.86 per pound compared to last year’s $32.02 16-pound turkey, or a 43% decrease from the 2022 turkey price. “Obviously the most dramatic price decrease comes with the 16-pound turkey,” says Arizona Farm Bureau Strategic Communications Director Julie Murphree. “The average price of an eight to 16-pound turkey was $1.27 per pound in August of this year, down a whopping 26% from the $1.72 average during the same time in 2022. The turkey supply right now is also in good shape and that’s a big part of the overall price.”
The 2023 Arizona Thanksgiving meal cost estimate is the result of the Arizona Farm Bureau’s annual informal Thanksgiving Dinner Price Survey of the prices of basic food items found on a traditional Thanksgiving dinner table. Volunteer leaders from the Arizona Farm Bureau Women’s Leadership Committee throughout Arizona went into their local grocery stores the week of November 6 to price-check the market basket items.
The Arizona Farm Bureau survey shopping list includes turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, rolls with butter, peas, cranberries, a veggie tray, milk, plus pumpkin pie with whipped cream, all in quantities sufficient to serve a family of 10 with plenty of leftovers. To make a proper comparison, these items are the same food items used in the Farm Bureau survey for the past three decades.
“Go to Arizona Farm Bureau’s Fill Your Plate to see a category called Thanksgiving Dinner recipes in our recipe section,” added Murphree. “Our Arizona families asked us to feature these special recipes, some from our Arizona farm and ranch families.”
“I’m delighted to see an overall lower price for the traditional Thanksgiving meal this holiday. Arizona families will have much more to be thankful for as we gather around the dinner table,” said Arizona Farm Bureau President Stefanie Smallhouse, a cattle rancher, alfalfa and specialty crop farmer from Pima County. “I can’t help but suggest that in addition to a reduced price for your turkey, you might consider some Arizona beef as well. Arizonans spend a smaller portion of their family budget on food than anywhere else in the world and our abundance and diversity of food products means we can select from an array of protein meats and other food basics.”
Arizona Farm Bureau’s Women’s Leadership Chair highlights the famous protein source that is a big part of a traditional Thanksgiving meal. “Celebrating Thanksgiving dinner at home this year will be more cost-effective for families, and for that we give thanks,” said Shawn Wood, also a Maricopa County Farm Bureau Member. “The turkey, which is the meal's centerpiece, is a great source of protein and contains essential vitamins and minerals. Due to the hard work of American farmers, the turkey supply improved significantly over the last year, which helped bring down the cost of a turkey by nearly 30%. Families can enjoy a nutritious meal, memories, and savings around the table this year!”
Arizona farmers and ranchers produce most of the ingredients in the traditional Thanksgiving meal including dressing (bread, onions, and celery), peas, pumpkin, pecans for pies, and several others. Even roses, sometimes used for holiday centerpieces, are grown in Arizona.
“Arizona Farm Bureau is grateful to all Arizonans for supporting local farm and ranch families and we wish you a very blessed Thanksgiving,” Smallhouse added.
Added Murphree, “I challenge our Arizona families to put their sophisticated shopping hats on and beat our market basket price of $51.89. Most Arizona shoppers can beat our market basket since we don’t shop with discounts. We’re cheering on the good news that the 2023 Thanksgiving market basket is so much lower than last year’s.”
The average price of the remainder of the menu is listed below, also showing the comparison to last year’s market basket.
Arizona Farm Bureau comparison over last year:
Turkey, 16 lbs. $18.32 D $32.02
Cube Stuffing, 14 oz. $3.55 D $3.93
Pumpkin Pie Mix, 30 oz. $4.80 D $5.11
Pie Shells (2) $2.74 D $5.08
Sweet Potatoes, 3 lbs. $4.42 D $5.09
Brown & Serve Rolls, 12 $4.27 D $4.28
Frozen Green Peas, 1 lb. $2.31 U $2.27
Whole Milk, 1 gallon $2.97 D $3.34
Fresh Cranberries, 12 oz. $1.95 D $3.01
Whipping Cream, ½ pint $1.76 D $2.79
Vegetable tray, l lb. $0.86 U $0.83
*Misc. ingredients $3.95 D $4.13
Items We Track Not Included in Overall Total
Fresh Ham, 1lb. $4.85 U $3.06
Russet Potatoes, 5lbs. $3.69 U $2.74
Frozen Green Beans, 1lb. $2.62 U $2.18
*Coffee, onions, eggs, sugar, flour, evaporated milk and butter
Prices of past surveys include: 1993 - $24.99; 1994 - $26.93; 1995 - $28.68; 1996 - $30.37; 1997 - $26.14; 1998 - $27.41; 1999 - $33.82; 2000 - $34.11; 2001 - $35.05; 2002 - $34.43; 2003 - $36.28 (national figure); 2004 - $35.22; 2005 - $37.69; 2006 - $39.22; 2007 - $51.14; 2008 - $52.81; 2009 – 40.47; 2010 – 44.17; 2011 – 50.06; 2012 – 47.53; 2013 – 48.63; 2014 - 46.16; 2015 - $47.83; 2016 - $46.27, 2017 - $39.82, 2018 - $39.17, and 2019 – $42.68 2020 - $47.02; 2021 – $49.62; 2022 – $71.88
Organic prices include 2011 – 106.39 (benchmark year); 2012 – 87.23; 2013 – 91.00; 2014 - 95.76; 2015 - $98.03; 2016 - $94.86; 2017 - $93.51. 2018 – 95.96. 2019 – (did not price for 2019). 2020 – 96.49 (Did not price for 2021,2022 or 2023)
The Farm Bureau Thanksgiving Dinner Price Survey is unscientific but serves as an indicator of actual price trends across the state. This survey is based on shelf prices at the time item prices were captured and does not reflect special prices and promotional gimmicks.
Arizona Farm Bureau’s Women’s Leadership Committee shoppers involved in this year’s survey were asked to identify the best in-store price, excluding promotional coupons and special deals. The Farm Bureau’s survey menu has remained unchanged since 1986 to allow for consistent price comparisons.
The Arizona Farm Bureau is a grassroots organization dedicated to preserving and improving the agriculture industry through member involvement in advocacy, communication and education that include programs and services to support our Arizona farmers and ranchers and our 25,000 members. As a member services organization, individuals can become a member by going to www.azfb.org. For information on member benefits call 480.635.3609. For recipes, farmers markets, farm products and farms to visit, go to Arizona Farm Bureau’s www.fillyourplate.org.