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Whole Foods and Amazon Talk Turkey

Smaller, organic birds gain favor with shoppers, new research shows
Photograph courtesy of Whole Foods Market

Nearly half of Americans say it’s important their Thanksgiving turkey be organic, a figure even higher among the millennial subset, according to a recent survey on turkey preferences carried out by Whole Foods Markets.

Forty-nine percent of all shoppers say organic turkeys are important vs. 62% of millennials, the survey found.

“In addition to a rise in organic, our stores are seeing a growing trend in shoppers looking for medium-sized turkeys, with customers purchasing additional turkey breast to satisfy the demand for more white meat at the table and avoid the added logistics of a bigger turkey,” said Theo Weening, VP of meat and poultry for the Austin, Texas-based retailer. The survey found that more than half of people buying a Thanksgiving turkey prefer to buy an 18-pound or smaller turkey.

The survey also found that a quarter of respondents dedicate half or more of their Thanksgiving plate to turkey, with half preferring the breast, 19% choosing the leg and 14% the thigh. However, 22% of millennials will choose the leg vs. 17% of boomers and 16% of Gen Xers.

Whole Foods and parent company Amazon said they would offer special savings on organic and classic turkeys for Thanksgiving. Customers can choose from select organic ($3.49 per pound) and classic turkeys ($2.49 per pound). Prime members will save even more on turkeys ($2.99 per pound for organic and $1.99 per pound for classic).

All turkeys meet the grocer’s strict quality standards, including no antibiotics ever, no animal by-products in their feed, and animal welfare audits by third-party certifier programs such as Global Animal Partnership, Whole Foods said. The turkey offer runs from Nov. 13-28.

“We know our customers care about where their food comes from, and our turkeys meet some of the highest quality standards in the grocery industry. We are excited to bring back our turkey deals to make it even easier for customers to entertain and save big this Thanksgiving,” Weening said.

Customers can reserve their turkeys in advance and pick up in store. Prime members who reserve in advance will be eligible for the lower prices when they check out in store.

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