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IRI projects Thanksgiving meals will cost 13.5% more this year

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CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– IRI, which recently merged with The NPD Group to create a leading global technology, analytics and data provider, today released its 2022 Thanksgiving Tracker, a new report revealing insights on Thanksgiving-related grocery sales trends.

As the holiday approaches and inflation issues continue to impact many industries, IRI has tracked a variety of holiday-related items to determine their price, availability and demand leading up to Thanksgiving.

These key insights will enable retailers and manufacturers to make more informed decisions about merchandising and promotions to drive growth and profitability, and to deliver for shoppers during one of the largest food holidays of the year.

“Despite the significant impact of inflation, consumers are excited to return to pre-pandemic holiday celebrations, and many will be participating in the Thanksgiving holiday by purchasing the same amount of groceries as they typically do,” said Alastair Steel, executive, IRI Client Engagement.

“This year, consumers are planning further ahead for Thanksgiving than ever before, picking up staple items as they see promotions that fit within their budgets. The weeks leading up to Thanksgiving will be a tremendous opportunity for CPG brands and grocery retailers, and recent data will empower optimization on promotions and advertising strategies for key products.”

IRI tracked the top Thanksgiving-related grocery categories based on data for the week ending Oct. 16, 2022, resulting in these key findings:
• Thanksgiving is back, but it will cost more. Big celebrations are back, and 76% of respondents to an IRI survey report they’ll celebrate Thanksgiving in the way they typically celebrated it before COVID-19. However, the traditional Thanksgiving meal items are estimated to cost 13.5% more than they did a year ago.
• More young people are participating in the holiday meal. The pandemic empowered a new generation of cooks, and more young people will be preparing a holiday meal or hosting a celebration among family or friends. There will be an average of 7.4 people at the Thanksgiving table this year, but that number jumps to 9.8 for Gen Z and younger Millennials (under the age of 32).
• Thanksgiving shopping will take place earlier this year. In 2021, shoppers purchased their Thanksgiving staples much earlier than they did in previous years, including the highest rates of whole-bird turkey volume in October ever seen. Many consumers expect to pay more for Thanksgiving-related items this year, and with concerns surrounding inflation, shoppers are already looking for deals and will be picking up items as they see them promoted.
• Thanksgiving is one of the largest food holidays in the United States. Historically, many categories see a significant lift in sales leading up to Thanksgiving. This year will be no different; categories including baking, beverages, meat (both turkey and ham), sides and pies are expected to see a significant volume lift.

The details of these findings are included in IRI’s 2022 Thanksgiving Tracker, published here.

About IRI
IRI unifies technology, analytics and data to reinvent how people and companies make decisions, take action and optimize performance. With the largest repository of purchase, media, social, causal and loyalty data, all integrated into an on-demand, cloud-based technology platform, IRI helps to guide its more than 5,000 clients around the world in their quests to capture market share, connect with consumers, collaborate with key constituents and deliver market-leading growth. For more information, visit