If you are in the turkey business, then welcome to the busiest and most stressful month of your life. I’m sure your life right now is hectic enough to make a political reporter’s workload look light by comparison. I’m also sure that all your scheduling, forecasting and planning was done months ago. Now, it comes down to making sure that orders are fulfilled and your inventory can hold up to the consumer demand for a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving.

A year ago, though, nobody could have planned for this particular Thanksgiving. Nobody would have foreseen a holiday when families would be too cautious to celebrate it together due to a dangerous pandemic, and where the large family gatherings might be reduced to a Zoom call.

There are people – plenty of them – who will treat this Thanksgiving as any other holiday, in spite of the warnings about Coronavirus. They’ll want the usual 20-plus-pound whole turkey. But more this year than ever before, there will be small family gatherings or even solo diners who are staying distant to stay safe. What options will they have for Thanksgiving?

Retailers hopefully have been thinking ahead and offering more turkey options than ever before. There will be a real need for smaller whole turkeys and turkey tenderloins. Think ahead to Christmas and other holidays, too. Those big, beautiful-looking spiral-cut hams will still be the highlight of many a holiday dinner table, but downsized dinner tables will need smaller hams and turkeys, too.

After this year’s ups and downs, and then more downs, the holiday season is going to be a time to give thanks and celebrate the things that are truly important – love, family, friendship. Your entrees, regardless of size, will help make those dinners even more special.

Have something to say? Contact Sam Gazdziak at gazdziaks@bnpmedia.com.