Gozzi’s Turkey Farm in Guilford fielded calls on Thursday with people looking for turkeys for their Thanksgiving feast, but the farm has already sold out.
Gozzi’s typically raises about 15,000 birds a year. This year wasn’t any different, they just sold out faster.
“They just started calling me a lot earlier this year because the news started saying there’s going to be a turkey shortage and all this. There is, I guess. There definitely is. I think it’s more the frozen turkeys in the big outfits,” said Bill Gozzi, owner of Gozzi’s Turkey Farm.
Gozzi said he had to raise his price by about 20 cents a pound because the cost of feed went up. As for shipping costs, they also went up, but Gozzi said he ate the cost to try and keep the price lower for customers.
“There’s better years than others and it all averages out. So you don’t want to get greedy in a year like this and then next year, you’ve driven the people away,” Gozzi said.
Last year the challenge was people wanting smaller birds.
“Remember the CDC said a couple weeks before Thanksgiving you could only have six people gather. So that was a little difficult to work through because I have to decide in the summer what size turkeys we’re doing. But we got through it. People are ready to go this year I can tell you that. They’re ready to gather. They miss it, you know,” said Gozzi.
Danny Harrington, of Branford, reserved two live turkeys in October. He plans to have about 20 friends and family around his Thanksgiving table this year.
“So two birds clean, dressed, dead so to speak, is 150 bucks. It's only 80 bucks for two live birds. So you're saving yourself a heck of a lot of costs. Plus you get the weight right before Thanksgiving you still have walking around. They ain't going anywhere and get them done that morning. You got a fresh bird within six hours. You can't beat that, especially in taste. Moisture is the key thing,” Harrington said.
This weekend into early next week is when there will be a rush of customers to pick up their birds and of course coming to see the multi-colored turkeys. The farm started raising turkeys in 1940 and Gozzi’s grandmother started having multi-colored birds in 1950.