Survey finds retailers are keeping turkey prices low this year

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CROPSEYVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) — All the side dishes, fixings, and desserts can add up to make Thanksgiving an expensive occasion for many families. However, a survey from the New York Farm Bureau found that retailers are keeping prices for turkey more affordable this year.

Grocery stores will be selling turkeys as low as $.37 per pound this year, according to officials at the NY Farm Bureau.

Turkeys at Laughing Earth, a small, family-owned farm in Cropseyville that sells directly to consumers, are going for $5.00 per pound, nearly 15 times the retail price.

Laughing Earth works with farmer’s markets, as well as provides products straight to consumers.

“We recognize that, but it’s a local product and we raised them on a small scale, and it helps support a small family farm,” Zack Metzger, owner of Laughing Earth told News10.

Sandy Prokop, Managing Director of the NY Farm Bureau Foundation for Agricultural Education, says in the eyes of the USDA, there’s no difference in the quality of turkey between local farms and store. They all have to meet the same guidelines and regulations.

Metzger says customers come right to the farm to pick up their fresh turkey.

Metzger stresses that you can’t match the experience of knowing exactly where your food is coming from.

All but two of the turkeys are sold for Thanksgiving.

“Every one of these turkeys will be bought and picked up right here from the farm,” Metzger told News10, “which is great for us, but it’s also kind of a fun experience for our customers.”

The turkeys at Laughing Earth are raised on a pasture, where Metzger says they eat grass, bugs, and get lots of exercise.

Buying your turkey locally also helps the community.

“When you purchase locally, those agricultural dollars, which include food, turnover more times than any other kind of dollars in the community,” Prokop told News10, “so you’re actually helping your community to establish a good strong base economically.”

Prokop says part of the reason the retail price has gone down is because farms are becoming more efficient each season, and stores also add discounts to bring in more customers around the holidays.

“Really what they’re charging doesn’t cover the production cost, but it allows the consumer a great variety of choice to have a quality product,” Prokop told News10.

Prokop says you’ll get a good product, whether you go to the grocery store or the local farm.

If you buy one from Laughing Earth, it won’t be frozen when you pick it up.

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