Thanksgiving Day: Nov. 25, 2010
Why we do it
In the fall of 1621, the Pilgrims, early settlers of Plymouth Colony, held a three-day feast to celebrate a bountiful harvest, an event many regard as the nation’s first Thanksgiving. Historians have also recorded ceremonies of thanks among other groups of European settlers in North America, including British colonists in Virginia in 1619.
In 1863 President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the last Thursday of November as a national day of thanksgiving. Later, President Franklin Roosevelt clarified that Thanksgiving should always be celebrated on the fourth Thursday of the month to encourage earlier holiday shopping, never on the occasional fifth Thursday.
1. 242 million- The number of turkeys expected to be raised in the United States in 2010. That’s down 2 percent from the number raised during 2009. The turkeys produced in 2009 together weighed 7.1 billion pounds and were valued at $3.6 billion. Source: USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service
2. 47 million- The preliminary estimate of turkeys Minnesota expected to raise in 2010. The Gopher State was tops in turkey production, followed by North Carolina (31.0 million), Arkansas (28.0 million), Missouri (17.5 million), Indiana (16.0 million) and Virginia (15.5 million). These six states together would probably account for about two-thirds of U.S. turkeys produced in 2010.
3. 735 million pounds- The forecast for U.S. cranberry production in 2010. Wisconsin is expected to lead all states in the production of cranberries, with 435 million pounds, followed by Massachusetts (195 million). New Jersey, Oregon and Washington are also expected to have substantial production, ranging from 14 million to 53 million pounds.
4. 1.9 billion pounds- The total weight of sweet potatoes — another popular Thanksgiving side dish — produced by major sweet potato producing states in 2009. North Carolina (940 million pounds) produced more sweet potatoes than any other state. It was followed by California (592 million pounds) and Louisiana (162 million pounds).
5. 931 million pounds-Total production of pumpkins produced in the major pumpkin-producing states in 2009. Illinois led the country by producing 429 million pounds of the vined orange gourd. Pumpkin patches in California and Ohio also provided lots of pumpkins: Each state produced at least 100 million pounds. The value of all pumpkins produced by major pumpkin-producing states was $103 million.
6. 2.2 billion bushels-The total volume of wheat — the essential ingredient of bread, rolls and pie crust — produced in the United States in 2010. North Dakota and Kansas accounted for 33 percent of the nation’s wheat production.
7. 736,680 tons- The 2010 contracted production of snap (green) beans in major snap (green) bean-producing states. Of this total, Wisconsin led all states (326,900 tons). Many Americans consider green bean casserole a traditional Thanksgiving dish.
Source: The previous data came from the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service .
8. $7.3 million-The value of U.S. imports of live turkeys from January through July of 2010 — 99.1 percent from Canada. When it comes to sweet potatoes, the Dominican Republic was the source of 62.1 percent ($3.4 million) of total imports ($5.5 million). The United States ran a $3.9 million trade deficit in live turkeys during the period but had a surplus of $31.5 million in sweet potatoes.
Source: Foreign Trade Statistics .
9. 13.8 pounds-The quantity of turkey consumed by the typical American in 2007, with no doubt a hearty helping devoured at Thanksgiving time. Per capita sweet potato consumption was 5.2 pounds.
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture as cited in the Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2010, Tables 212-213 .
10. $3.6 billion- The value of turkeys shipped in 2002. Arkansas led the way in turkey shipments, with $581.5 million, followed by Virginia ($544.2 million) and North Carolina ($453 million). In 2002, poultry businesses with a primary product of turkey totaled 35 establishments, employing about 17,000 people.
Source: Poultry Processing: 2002
11. $4.1 billion-Forecast 2010 receipts to farmers from turkey sales. This exceeds the total receipts from sales of products such as barley, oats, sorghum (combined) and peanuts.
Source: USDA Economic Research Service
12. $1.33- Retail cost per pound of a frozen whole turkey in December 2008.
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as cited in the Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2010, Table 717
13 -3 is the Number of places in the United States named after the holiday’s traditional main course. Turkey, Texas, was the most populous in 2009, with 445 residents, followed by Turkey Creek, La. (362) and Turkey, N.C. (272). There are also nine townships around the country named Turkey, three in Kansas.
Source: Population estimates
5- Number of places and townships in the United States that are named Cranberry or some spelling variation of the red, acidic berry (e.g., Cranbury, N.J.), a popular side dish at Thanksgiving. Cranberry township (Butler County), Pa., was the most populous of these places in 2009, with 27,560 residents. Cranberry township (Venango County), Pa., was next (6,774).
Source: Population estimates
28- Number of places in the United States named Plymouth, as in Plymouth Rock, the landing site of the first Pilgrims. Plymouth, Minn., is the most populous, with 72,849 residents in 2009; Plymouth, Mass., had 56,842. There is just one township in the United States named “Pilgrim.” Located in Dade County, Mo., its population was 126 in 2009. And then there is Mayflower, Ark., whose population was 2,257 in 2009.
Source: Population estimates
117 million- Number of households across the nation — all potential gathering places for people to celebrate the holiday.
Source: Families and Living Arrangements: 2009
- Turn the tv on and open the newspaper…. whats the best reported news you’ve ever heard?
- Hey! Guess what? Whats the best personal news someone has told you?
- Goshdarnit I’m tired… When you lay down to sleep at night, whats the best position for you to fall asleep in?
- What the most excited you’ve ever been?
- Ever touched a turkey? And yeah, I mean the gobble gobble kind. I’m glad I re-read this or this could have been a stupid question. Have you ever touched a living, breathing, not on your plate turkey?
- Its everywhere, it’s driving me crazy! Spend money, people, spend money! Have you boughten anything from the “new & early” Black Friday deals this year?
- So the news is out, the most best news ever in the history of news – Kimber & Berleen are finally going to meet! Kimber is flying to Minnesota. What should she bring with her?
- Kimber thinks all Minnesotans eat lutefisk. It’s a Scandinavian food and lucky for her, we’re German. Maybe it’s Norwegian. Heck I don’t know – you ever ate the stuff?
- Whats in your right pocket right now?
- When you go to the dentist for your cleaning, do you use the toothbrush that they give you or do you use one that you have purchased yourself?
That’s a tough one considering people tell you what they want you to know. I’ll go with Twitter.
He’s registered for classes next semester. Got the bill today.
I fall asleep so fast I never notice.
I’m sure whatever it was, it had to do with shopping and having a wad of cash in my wallet.
Depends how you define “turkey”.
boughten? boughten? What’s that?
Bud. I’ll be the fly on the wall.
I’ll stick with the glug.
Don’t have one. I’m wearing yoga pants.
Eventually someone uses it.
Thanks for bringing this back.