Turkey Farmers Say Shortage Of Workers Will Delay Production – CBS Chicago

CHICAGO (CBS) — The vacations are proper across the nook and meaning in search of the proper turkey for the dinner desk. However the turkey firm Butterball is anxious there could also be a scarcity in provide this yr.

CBS 2’s Jackie Kostek visited a turkey farm in Dundee. They’re working very exhausting to make it possible for they will sustain with demand. After chatting with a number of farmers, they are saying It’s not simply the labor, it’s the folks it takes to get the turkey from the farm to your desk that’s the drawback.

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For effectively over a century, Harrison’s Poultry Farm has been ensuring considered one of Thanksgiving’s most necessary company arrives to the household dinner on time.

“Every little thing that goes into producing turkey has made it more durable this yr, particularly labor.”

Kyle Zimmerman and his brother took over the household enterprise in the course of the pandemic. He says nationwide provide chain points have elevated many prices, however he credit long-standing relationships with small farms for not having a problem with provide.

“We’re inserting rooster orders day-after-day. The place turkey orders, we get just a few deliveries each week all year long after which our Thanksgiving order, now we have a lot time to plan for it and so do the farms,” Zimmerman stated.

Robert Kauffman runs Ho-Ka Turkey Farms in Waterman, Illinois. He says the issue isn’t the turkeys. It’s having the folks to decorate them – take the feathers off and get them able to prepare dinner.

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“I’ve been actual anxious about getting short-term assist for the dressing season,” Kauffman stated.

He says he raises about 60,000 turkeys a yr, most of that are bought in November. He normally brings in about 100 short-term staff. Proper now, he has seven.

“I can costume with a skeleton crew however I don’t prefer to. And I received’t get the numbers I want. If I’ve a pleasant full dressing line, we are able to do possibly 2,500 birds a day. The tempo I prefer to have,” stated Kauffman.

So how early is simply too early to stake declare to a Thanksgiving turkey?

“We’re taking orders at the moment and we’re noticing that much more orders are coming on this yr than regular. I do suppose we are going to promote out early,” Zimmerman stated.

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The proprietor of the farm in Dundee stated turkeys are only a small a part of his enterprise however says they’ve already bought out of their presale turkeys; that’s about 250. He’ll have one other couple hundred for resale near thanksgiving.

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