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Turkey, Pumpkin Gobble Up Thanksgiving Food Costs In 2011 [AUDIO]

Stacy Proebstle, Townsquare Media

The cost of Thanksgiving dinner is up almost 13 percent in 2011 and turkey and pumpkins are credited with bumping up the prices this year.

According to the American Farm Bureau, a 10-person Thanksgiving dinner will cost $49.20 this year, up 13 percent from 2010.

The cost breaks down:

$11.06 for sides, such as stuffing, peas and sweet potatoes

$2.30 for 12 dinner rolls

$3.10 for drinks

$11.17 for the ingredients to make a couple pumpkin pies

$21.57 for a 16 pound turkey

The big ticket item – a 16-pound turkey – came in at $21.57 this year. That was roughly $1.35 per pound, an increase of about 25 cents per pound, or a total of $3.91 per whole turkey, compared to 2010.

Ocean County supermarkets were buzzing with customers filling their carts for the big day and many say they’ve noticed the higher prices.

“Turkeys cost a lot more this year” said one woman.

“They can be expensive, but I wouldn’t know because with all the deals, you can always get a free one or a free ham so that cuts down on your big expense” said a man from Brick.

Another item that has seen a spike in price is pumpkins, thanks to weather-related problems during growing season.

“We aren’t getting pies because they are like $13 for one, its ridiuclous, so we got ingredients to make our own” said a group of shoppers.

“I think prices have definitely gone up, I’m only cooking for six people this year and I’m spending about $50, which doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s more than I’ve ever spent on Thanksgiving” said a woman with a cart full of groceries in Toms River.

Other costs for side dish and desert items:

A gallon of whole milk increased in price by 42 cents per gallon, to $3.66. Other items that showed a price increase from last year were: a 30-ounce can of pumpkin pie mix, $3.03, up 41 cents; two nine-inch pie shells, $2.52, up 6 cents; a ½ pint of whipping cream, $1.96, up 26 cents; one pound of green peas, $1.68, up 24 cents; a 14-ounce package of cubed bread stuffing, $2.88, up 24 cents; a dozen brown-n-serve rolls, $2.30, up 18 cents; three pounds of sweet potatoes, $3.26, up 7 cents; and fresh cranberries, $2.48, up 7 cents.

How are New Jersey residents dealing with the higher prices?

“I’m couponing and trying to save a few bucks here and there.”

Another woman said she’s asking everyone to bring a dish this year.

But, regardless of whether you’re willing to pay more for your groceries, we need to keep in mind the reason for the holiday.

“I think we should all be thankful that we can afford to buy these items and that we have food on the table, some people aren’t so lucky” said a woman from Silverton.

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