It’s no longer news that prices for everything from dairy to flour to meat have gone up significantly this year, and are continuing to do so as we slide into the madness of the holiday season. With ingredients at a premium right now, some essentials are becoming increasingly harder to find at big-box grocery stores. So turning to smaller grocery markets that work with local farmers and producers — by extension, cutting out some of the middle man — is one way to make sure those Thanksgiving dinner plans go off without a hitch.
Vincent Finazzo, owner of Riverwards Produce in Fishtown and Old City in Philly, which stands on traditional Indigenous territory known as Lenapehoking, says that the key to pulling off the Thanksgiving dinner this year is communication with your local grocery purveyors about what it is you need. “Find out who is near you [and] start those conversations now,” he says, emphasizing that a lot of smaller stores will help you find what you need if they don’t already have it in stock. Timing is key: the sooner you start planning for Thanksgiving and holiday dinners, the better.
With costs already so high, it might seem additionally prohibitive to go to independent grocery stores, where organic and locally source products can be — but aren’t always — more expensive. For Finazzo, the most important thing is to try to make at least one thing you’re serving for Thanksgiving dinner locally sourced. If that local turkey is too expensive, try sourcing local sweet potatoes. “It doesn’t have to be everything on the table,” Finazzo says. But when you shop at local purveyors who are sourcing ingredients from farmers and producers in the area, you know where your money is going. “You can have some confidence in your splurge — that the money is going into the pockets of the grocery workers and the farmers.”Read More