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Bay Area Grocery Stores Facing Shortages Of Items On Thanksgiving Shopping Lists

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX) -- A little more two weeks before Thanksgiving, shoppers may be facing shortages on supermarket shelves of items for the traditional holiday meal.

Before you grab your cart and head into the store, expect to pay record high prices. The supply chain crush led to soaring car prices, and it's now impacting your holiday meal, too.

Letigre Waters loaded up her car with groceries she'll use for her family's Thanksgiving dinner.

"I definitely see a change in the prices for the last year or since COVID I guess," said Waters.

The US Department of Agriculture says there isn't a turkey shortage this year, but economists expect prices for the tasty birds to be up around 10-to-15 percent.

"A lot of companies are telling me they can't hire anybody so the people they do have they're paying overtime so the cost is going up," said RJ Market owner Danny Pesusic.

"This current run, I'm not grabbing a turkey thankfully," said Waters.

Many grocers including RJ's Market in San Francisco can't stock up on most items like they used to.

"I've been in the business for 43 years, and I've never seen anything like this," said Pesusic.

From grocery stores, to suppliers, there are gaps.

Larry Schultz is an organic turkey farmer in Minnesota. It's taking longer to distribute his product, because of delays in getting packaging material and other needed supplies, ultimately resulting in a domino effect.

"It's just been more of a challenge getting trucks, everything the last couple years has been a little more challenging -- even down to boxes," said Schultz.

Aluminum and metal shortages mean canned goods are in shorter supply, including pumpkin puree that took a major hit from a fungus.

"It's everything. Cranberry sauce, stuffing, turkeys, everything is down. It's minimal," said Pesusic.

According to market research firm IRI, supplies of food and household items at the end of last month are 4-to-11% lower than normal.

That is a possible sign of what shoppers are seeing in November too.

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