Can minimum wage employees afford a traditional Thanksgiving?

By AVERY MARTINEZ November 26, 2019

For as long as there has been an American dream, there’s been a Thanksgiving meal. In portraits such as Rockwell or dreams of Puritan America, the turkey and the stuffing have found themselves firmly lodged in the mythos of Thanksgiving.

But, in the 21st Century when minimum wage has been frozen at the same rate for over two decades, can a minimum wage household afford a traditional Thanksgiving?

As of Nov. 20, the Thanksgiving meal for 10 people will cost approximately $48.91, according to the American Farm Bureau’s Thanksgiving dinner survey. And on average, most people host between 6-10 people on Thanksgiving.

The Farm Bureau is an independent, non-governmental, volunteer organization that analyzes and takes action to improve education, economic opportunity, social advancement and national well-being related to farming and ranching.

Thanksgiving is still a family and food-focused holiday, according to findings in the Thanksgiving dinner cost survey from the bureau.

In fact, 90% of adults celebrate Thanksgiving with some sort of a special meal, according to the survey results.

To this day, the traditional Thanksgiving is made of several distinct foods, according to the survey.

Turkey remains a “staple” for 95% of consumers, the survey states.

Other items that make up a part of a Thanksgiving meal, according to the survey, include stuffing, milk, veggies, pie shells, rolls, green beans, peas, cranberries, macaroni and cheese, gravy, corn and different types of desserts such as apple or pecan pie.