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A word from UGA Extension
With Thanksgiving, its time to talk turkey
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As Thanksgiving approaches, we dive into cleaning the house for guests and family, we get excited for Black Friday deals and farmers are still stressing about getting this year’s crop out of the field. But, as we take this week to prepare for Thanksgiving, the main course started preparation much earlier this year.

A U.S.-raised turkey must hatch in July to make it to the table in November. Georgia is not well known for turkey production — our bird of choice is chicken, where we are No. 1 in the U.S. for chicken production. But, our neighbors in North Carolina produce a lot of turkey. North Carolina ranks No. 2 in total turkey production in the U.S., with an annual production of 36 million turkeys. That is a lot of Butterballs! These turkeys do receive a balanced diet during their lifetime made up of soybeans and corn. Their environment is a temperature controlled house the length of a football field. This ensures the turkeys are comfortable and eating well to grow to a mature weight of 15.5 lbs.

Turkey is delicious and nutritious. In a 3-ounce serving of boneless, skinless turkey breast there is 26 grams of protein, 135 calories and just 3 grams of fat. That is a protein-packed piece of poultry! If you fry your turkey your caloric numbers will rise but you can rest happy in that you received your daily protein requirements!

So as the turkey sits in the middle of the table and serves as the main course; rest easy in knowing that U.S. farmers produced a responsibly raised product that is delicious and nutritious.

Happy Thanksgiving!

For more information or questions, contact Effingham Ag Agent Sam Ingram at 754-8040 or