What will Thanksgiving dinner cost this year? - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

What will Thanksgiving dinner cost this year?

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With Thanksgiving quickly approaching, shoppers are starting to look for the best deals on the essentials for their holiday spread.

"To me I think they're still too high," said shopper Margaret Young.

"I'm expecting them to be high this year," said Angela Zagal.

They say it gets rough when cooking for big crowds.

"I'm cooking for 15 people this year," said Susan Maier.

"When you're feeding nine people at a time it's ridiculous," said Young.

The bad news - the cost of a Thanksgiving dinner is up this year.

"I would say about a 2 percent increase," said Mary Ann Lienhart-Cross, Purdue Extension Educator.

The Indiana Farm Bureau estimates the cost for a meal for 10 people is $50.99 this year, up from $49.38 in 2011.

But, Lienhart-Cross says it could have been worse.

"So a Thanksgiving meal if it's up, it's not up much compared to what it could be."

She says after this summer's drought and high fuel prices, this year's prices are actually a deal compared to what was expected.

"Our food is really a bargain and so convenient," she says.

So, what's costing more this year? Let's start with the bird. An Indiana Farm Bureau survey shows a 16 pound turkey costs $1.88 more.

"Grain prices are up because of the drought. The corn and soybeans and everything the turkey ate cost the farmer more so turkey prices are up," said Lienhart-Cross.

The Farm Bureau says a dozen rolls will cost you 16 cents more this holiday. As for other traditional Thanksgiving products, Lienhart-Cross says the prices are pretty similar compared to last year. Some have even gone down. The Farm Bureau estimates a gallon of milk dropped the most, down 14 cents to $3.01 per gallon.

Lienhart-Cross says we won't see the true affects of the drought until next spring, long after your Thanksgiving meal is served.

"I think food prices are going to continue to go up."

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