Turkey farmers hoping Maritimers will buy local to support their industry
ANTIGONISH, N.S. -- Turkey farmers around the region are asking Maritimers to think turkey this holiday weekend.
Like many industries, the agriculture sector also took a hit during the pandemic.
Turkey farmers in Nova Scotia had to predict Thanksgiving sales in the spring despite the uncertainty of a pandemic.
"It would be a cutback of roughly 50,000 birds for Thanksgiving," said Steven Eadie of the Turkey Farmers of Nova Scotia."But that cutback, we had to predict what the cutback would be and we had to take an estimate of what Thanksgiving would be like, so hopefully we're wrong and that people will go out and buy a turkey and have a good turkey for Thanksgiving."
It takes about 10 weeks for the birds to grow before they hit the market.
Eadie and his brother run a turkey farm in Antigonish. He says like many industries, agriculture also took a hit during the pandemic, and this Thanksgiving, he's asking Maritimers to 'think turkey.'
"All turkey producers, we raise for Butterball, it's a six-kilogram, 13-pound bird, and so when they go into the store, if you look for a Butterball in that particular range and you look on the tag and it says 'grown in Atlantic Canada,' rest assured that is a product that's grown in Nova Scotia."
There are 20 turkey producers in Nova Scotia, and while this is typically a time of year when people gather in large groups to eat, drink and give thanks, many Maritimers say they're being extra-cautious with their Thanksgiving plans.
Thanksgiving turkey sales will help farmers like Eadie determine the demand for Christmas.
With thousands of young birds ready to hit the market in a few weeks, he is hopeful Maritimers will buy local this holiday season.