Will You Be Paying More for a Thanksgiving Turkey This Year?

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Turkey supplies are the lowest in years, sending wholesale prices to an all-time high. But what does that mean for your grocery bill this Thanksgiving?

Americans will eat an estimated 46 million turkeys this Thanksgiving. However, Bloomberg reports that farmers, still recovering from record-high prices for feed grain due to a drought in 2012 that affected cattle, hog and poultry output, produced about 4.2 billion pounds of turkey, down 3.3 percent from last year, and frozen inventory of turkey meat is the lowest its been in four years. Grocers are paying for record-high wholesale turkey prices that are up 16 percent, most recently reported at $1.24 per pound.

Some experts say those costs could be passed to consumers. According to Corinne Alexander, a Purdue University agricultural economist, the price of fresh turkeys are sensitive to wholesale costs. However, many retailers will price turkey as a "loss leader," selling them below cost or at special prices to draw in customers or reward frequent shoppers, because there's still some money to be made as shoppers pick up cranberry, stuffing and other non-turkey supplies for Thanksgiving. The average cost of feeding 10 people for Thanksgiving last year was $49.04 according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

For example, midwest retailer Meijer just announced a half price sale on turkeys that puts prices as low as 54 cents per pound, while Kroger and Walmart have discounted turkey to 79 cents per pound and 87 cents per pound, respectively.

Some suggest stocking up on turkey meat this holiday season.

"Buy a second turkey, put it in the freezer and have it for Christmas or this winter," Josh Elledge, founder of the coupon website SavingsAngel.com, told MLive. "You will not see a better price for the next 12 months."

check out the slideshow below to discover the ways you've been cooking turkey all wrong.

Image Credit: Getty Images

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