10 Tasty Stats About the Thanksgiving Supply Chain

November 22, 2016

As every Mom and Dad knows, Thanksgiving isn’t a holiday that just happens. It takes weeks – maybe months – of preparation, taking in food, football, family, friends, and how to bring all of those elements together for a successful feast.

Much like any successful event, there’s an extensive operation making it happen behind-the-scenes, as these ten stats about the Thanksgiving supply chain demonstrate.

Happy Thanksgiving pumpkin table

10 Thanksgiving Supply Chain Stats

Before you head off for your Thanksgiving break, take in these striking Turkey Day statistics. Trust us, they make your meal all the more tasty!

      1. Americans consume more than 50 million turkeys over the Thanksgiving weekend, which amounts to more than $1 billion spent on the seasonal bird across the nation. All before we consider stuffing and sides! (Source: National Turkey Federation)
      2. Almost as many travelers on the roads as turkeys on our tables? You better believe it! According to the American Automobile Association, 48.7 million of us will hit the highways this week. (Source: AAA)
      3. It’s not just turkeys and travel, of course. There’s also the beginning of the holiday retail season, which is increasingly driven by e-commerce. Online holiday sales are set to reach $95 billion this year, which explains why several US ports reportedrecord-breaking inbound cargo volumes in October. (Source: AAPA)
      4. A Thanksgiving meal travels up to 2,500 miles getting from farm to table. It’s not artisanal, but it’s certainly impressive in terms of an established supply chain! (Source: World Business)
      5. As every supply chain manager knows, not everything goes to plan when you have so many moving pieces in play. An estimated 370,000 travelers will need roadside assistance this year. (Source: AAA)
      6. The epicenter of U.S. turkey farming is the great state of Minnesota, from which roughly 1-in-5 turkeys hail. In fact, 40% of the 228 million birds raised every year come from just four states. The other three are Arkansas, North Carolina, and Missouri. (Source: WaPo)
      7. Is there any other time of year that we all tuck into pumpkin pies? It seems unlikely, as more than 50 million are consumed during the Thanksgiving break! Around 1 million of them come through the Cosco supply chain, according to Allspice. (Source: Allspice.com)
      8. According to the National Retail Federation, 75 million Americans shopped on Black Friday in 2015. Combined with those who took advantage of early opening on Thanksgiving day, more than 109 million people got off the sofa and into a store. Sadly, we have no statistics on how many doors were actually busted in the process. (Source: NRF)
      9. All of that extra commercial interest requires a workforce to keep the lines moving. Almost 700,000 seasonal employees are hired for the holiday period, including the many thousands who work behind-the-scenes to keep the shelves stocked with deals. (Source: NRF)
      10. An estimated 99.9% of all families will have “vibrant discussions” about politics at the dinner table this year. (Source: Every Thanksgiving dinner ever!)

The entire team at Capacity sends our warmest Thanksgiving wishes to you and your family!