With grocery prices moderating after nearly two years of steady increases, food retailers appear to be launching a price war to see who can offer the least-expensive Thanksgiving meal.
Both Walmart, the country’s largest grocer, and fast-growing discounter Aldi on Wednesday announced price cuts for next month’s holiday feast.
“We’re really proud to be able to say that the price of a Thanksgiving meal is going to come down,” Walmart U.S. President and CEO John Furner said during an interview on “Good Morning America” Wednesday. “Finally, we’re able to have a Thanksgiving basket that the prices are coming down versus a year ago, and Americans need that right now.”
In 2022, during a period of double-digit inflation, Walmart sold Thanksgiving ingredients at 2021 prices. But starting Nov. 1, Furner said, a traditional Thanksgiving meal for up to 10 people will retail for just over $70, about $2 less than last year.
Walmart said it will sell two Thanksgiving meal options, both priced lower than last year, one to prepare a from-scratch meal and the other with ready-to-bake options.
“About 92% of our customers tell us they’re concerned about food inflation and, look, the purpose of Walmart is to save people money so they can live better,” Furner said on the morning news program.
Aldi on Wednesday said it would cut prices up to 50%, starting Nov. 1 and running through the end of the year, on more than 70 Thanksgiving favorites, including potatoes, pumpkin pie, cranberries, butter and flour.
With an average savings of 30% on a typical Thanksgiving meal for 10, Aldi said its shoppers could afford to invite three extra guests to the holiday table under the new pricing.
“With inflation still looming, we’re providing shoppers extra relief to make the holidays a time for celebration, not stress,” Aldi President Dave Rinaldo said in a statement. “What’s served on the Thanksgiving table is just as important as who’s sitting around it, so Aldi is delivering big savings on key items so there’s always room for more guests.”
For example, Aldi said its Chef’s Cupboard French Fried Onions will be reduced from $2.89 to $1.79, Stonemill Pure Vanilla will decrease from $5.89 to $3.49 and Specially Selected Brioche Rolls will be $3.29, down from $4.69.
Last November, the American Farm Bureau Federation tallied the average cost of a Thanksgiving meal for 10 people at $64.05, up $10.74 from 2021.
Grocery prices were up 2.4% year over year in September, down from 3% in August, according to data released last week by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.