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Price of Thanksgiving Dinner Surpasses $50 for First Time

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A full plate of Thanksgiving dinner. Photograph by Carlos Osorio—Toronto Star via Getty Images

The price of a Thanksgiving meal for 10 people has nudged up slightly to $50.11—the first time the holiday meal has edged over the $50 mark, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

This year’s price is a 70-cent increase from last year’s average of $49.41.

The turkey, which made up almost half of the meal’s cost, is largely responsible for the increase. This year, the price of turkey was up almost 9 cents per pound. “There were some production disruptions earlier this year due to the highly pathogenic Avian influenza outbreak in the Midwest,” deputy chief economist John Anderson for the American Farm Bureau Federation said in a press release. “Turkey production is down this year but not dramatically.”

Milk and miscellaneous ingredients, like coffee, butter, onions and sugar, experienced slight price decreases.

Each year, to determine the price of a Thanksgiving meal, the AFBF surveys the prices of turkey, bread stuffing, sweet potatoes, bread rolls with butter, peas, cranberries, celery and carrots, pumpkin pie with whipped cream, and coffee and milk.

While this is the first year that the dollar price has surpassed $50, it’s still more than $12 cheaper than the cost in 1986 when adjusted for inflation.