It might be cheaper to eat out for Thanksgiving, report says

Percentage change of food at home outpaced food away from home in ‘21, CPI data shows

Butter (File photo)

If you’re thinking about making reservations instead of donning an apron this Thanksgiving, Consumer Price Index data suggests you might not be a turkey.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the percentage change of the cost of food at home began to outpace that of food away from home in 2021, leaving the gap narrower as we near some new holidays. A report published by Wells Fargo suggests your favorite Thanksgiving dishes could even cost you about the same at a restaurant as they would if you made them yourself.

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The cost of food away from home increased at a slower rate than food at home between now and last November, at rates of 5.79% and 9.81%, respectively, the report states. For some fixtures, the report noted a 32.5% change in egg prices, fruits and vegetables up 7.3% and a 25.8% change for butter.

Concerning turkey, recent avian flu issues inflicting the poultry industry would have kept prices higher than normal in any case, as the report’s authors said it was forecast to be 23% higher than last year by the fourth quarter.

[RELATED | A whole lot of gravy: Thanksgiving dinner expected to cost 13% more than last year]

Some of the latest CPI data available shows this trend cooling off, however. The table below shows the unadjusted percent change (UPC) among urban consumers between the last two Septembers for food at home and food away from home, but also the change between August and September 2022; the latter figures, shown in the rightmost column, indicate the still-narrowed gap has been relaxing somewhat.

The table also contains a column displaying the items’ relative importance as of August 2022, which BLS describes as “an estimate of how consumers would distribute their expenditures as prices change over time.”

ItemsRelative importance | Aug. 2022UPC | Sept. 2021 - Sept. 2022UPC | Aug. 2022 - Sept. 2022
Food at home8.47513.00.6
Food away from home5.1608.50.9

Read the report by clicking here.

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About the Author:

Brandon, a UCF grad, joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021. Before joining News 6, Brandon worked at WDBO.