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Millions Plan to Substitute Traditional Thanksgiving Turkey With Pizza, Salad as US Food Prices Soar

© AP Photo / Larry CroweThanksgiving turkey. (File)
Thanksgiving turkey. (File) - Sputnik International, 1920, 04.11.2022
Americans’ wallets have gotten lighter this year amid the highest inflation rate in decades, soaring gas prices and biting food prices, with the pinch caused at least in part by the Biden administration’s efforts to squeeze Russia – a major energy and food exporter, out of global markets to “punish” Moscow for its military operation in Ukraine.
Soaring poultry costs and shrinking purchasing power threaten to put the traditional Thanksgiving turkey out of reach for millions of Americans this year, with fresh US Department of Agriculture figures showing that Turkey costs have jumped from an average of $1.15 a pound in 2021 to $1.99 now.
Along with soaring inflation and spiking energy costs, the avian flu also affecting availability and prices, with USDA data indicating that 5.3 million turkeys died or had to be culled from exposure to the virus.
A recent survey by online financial advisory and wealth management company Personal Capital found that although nine in ten Americans planned to celebrate Thanksgiving in 2021, this year one in four plan to skip the holiday entirely to save money, while one in five doubt they’ll have enough money to cover costs, and 34 percent planning to slim down the celebration.
47 percent said they are planning a Friendsgiving celebration – marking the holiday with friends instead of family members and chipping in for meals and alcohol, with only 24 percent of Friendsgiving celebrators planning to have a turkey, with the rest planning to replace the bird with pizza, soups, salads and other foods.
45 percent of those polled admitted they felt “financially stressed” by the holiday, including 54 percent of Gen Zers, 51 percent of millennials, 33 percent of Gen Xers and 39 percent of baby boomers.
Dollar banknotes - Sputnik International, 1920, 10.10.2022
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The Personal Capital poll surveyed 1,000 Americans, and is said to have a margin of error of +-3 percent.
President Biden attempted to console Americans on the state of the economy in a speech in Florida on Tuesday, accusing Republicans of driving up inflation by plotting to scrap Social Security and Medicare, and urging voters to “watch what happens to the cost of living for hardworking Floridians.”
“That’s what I call inflation. At the end of the month, what you have left, if you have no money, that’s inflation. What’s – what are you – the things you need, are they going up? They are. They are,” Biden said.
Celebrated in the United States on the fourth Thursday in November, Thanksgiving is traditionally the second or third most popular national holiday after Christmas and the Fourth of July, and marks the start of the winter holiday season. George Washington, America’s first president, proclaimed the first national Thanksgiving in 1789, with the celebration becoming an official holiday in 1863.
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