These Turkeys May Be Harder to Get This Thanksgiving

Smaller turkeys could be in short supply this year with many families choosing to celebrate Thanksgiving in more intimate groups, according to a major poultry distributor.

According to ABC7, COVID will once again impact dinner tables during the holidays with families choosing to celebrate in smaller groups than they would do pre-pandemic.

It comes after many families decided to celebrate in smaller groups last year as COVID ripped through the U.S.

Angela Wilson, who owns Avenado's Holly Park Market in San Francisco, in California, told ABC7 about the situation in 2020 where smaller turkeys were in short supply due to more intimate gatherings.

She said: "Last year there was a lot more smaller turkey demand because of COVID."

But, COVID could also prove to have an impact on the supply of smaller turkeys this year, with families being mindful about the number of people they want to have around the dinner table.

Rebecca Welch, senior brand manager for poultry food provider Butterball, told the network: "We did see that about a third of consumers are planning to have smaller gatherings this year due to concerns about COVID-19 and the Delta variant."

She added: "We do see that if there is a big shift towards people wanting to celebrate in smaller groups, that smaller turkeys may be harder to come by."

But, smaller butchers appear to be more confident they can deliver turkeys of all sizes to meet different families' requests.

Robert Guerra, the owner of San Francisco-based Guerra Quality Meats, told ABC7 that it would take its first orders on November 1 and anticipated it would get its first shipment from local California supplier Diestel Turkey ranch.

He added: "They're a family-run operation much like we are. We've been dealing with them for over 30 years and we have no problems getting our turkeys this year,"

Avenando is also set to take orders on November 1 and believes there will not be a problem meeting demand.

Wilson told the network: "We have size ranges. They go from like 8 to 10, 10 to 12, 12 to 14, 16 to 18 and once those are sold, that's it,"

Newsweek has contacted Butterball for comment.

Supply issues have recently been felt in numerous parts of America as the country continues to feel the impact of the COVID pandemic.

Earlier this week, Newsweek reported as many as half a million shipping containers were sitting unopened in Los Angeles amid a truck driver shortage.

David Dollar, an expert of the global economy with the Brookings Institution, told Newsweek: "There's a shortage of truck drivers, so you've got basically a supply bottleneck on the U.S. side."

Thanksgiving Dinner
Smaller turkeys could be more popular this year. Stock image of homemade roasted Thanksgiving Day turkey with all the sides. bhofack2/Getty Images