Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thanksgiving isn't just about turkey

With Turkey day just around the corner, you could imagine my surprise when I read a report from the NPD Group on eating trends that only 30 percent of American households are planning to make a turkey this year.

Thirty percent.

I wondered if there was an epidemic going on, like a turkey shortage or something. Or that people were deciding to turn to ham this year or worse, Spam. But then I read on: Eighty-two percent plan on eating turkey, though, they weren't planning on making it themselves. Apparently, the reason that turkey making is so low is that most people are going to eat Thanksgiving dinner at someone else's home. NPD reports that two households will be the guest of another this Thursday. Though I'm not going to be "home" for Turkey Day, I'm still spending it with family. Last year, I was the guest of friends, and we had plenty of turkey to go around.

Harry Balzer, who writes the annual "Eating Patterns in America" and is vice president of NPD, said the numbers goes to show that people don't necessarily turn to food for comfort during this hectic and anxiety-filled season, they turn to other people instead.

I agree. They turn to other people with food. Eating is more fun that way.

NPD also tallied the top food items that will be devoured at tables across the country, the No. 1 pick - no surprise - was turkey. The rest:

2. Potatoes
3. Vegetables
4. Pie
5. Stuffing (I'm surprised this isn't higher on the list. Stuffing would have been #2 for me, mac and cheese #3 and a cake for #4, but that's just me.)
6. Fruit
7. Rolls
8. Salads
9. Bread
10. Sandwiches

Balzer stated in his report that with someone else preparing a Thanksgiving meal for you, "you've got to be thankful. But remember that just because you didn't prepare the meal, doesn't mean you get away with not cleaning up."

But I get away with it when it's my aunt's house.

- January Holmes

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