What are Truckers Hauling for Thanksgiving This Year?

During this time of blessings and gratitude, it’s easy for us to forget one fact - the holidays don’t happen without truckers. Period. From the plates we’re eating off of to the delicious bounty on the table, truckers brought it all to make sure you’re able to get all the trimmings you need for your holiday season.

Thanksgiving and the December holidays are going to look a little different this year due to the pandemic, but America’s backbone – the trucking industry – is still going to be rumbling along cross-country to bring joy to America’s tables. So, what’s on the list of deliveries this year?

Turkeys

The trucking industry will haul about 16000 pounds of turkey this year

Although many people prefer ham on Thanksgiving, turkey still reigns supreme. According to the National Turkey Federation (yes, that’s a thing), Americans will eat 46 million turkeys this year and Canada’s a contender as well with 3.1 million turkeys.

Most of these delicious gobblers will be hauled by the trucking industry, and with each turkey weighing an average of 15 pounds, we’re looking at truckers moving 690 million pounds of turkey this year from point of origin to your roaster, oven, or deep fryer. This translates into about 16,600 truckloads of turkeys for the U.S. alone.

Looking to make Thanksgiving dinner in your semi-truck this year? Find out how with our handy dandy guide.

Cranberries

Turkey is a big deal, but what’s a heaping plate of hot turkey without a sweet side of cranberries? Whether you’re Team Canned or Team Fresh, 94% of American households have some form of cranberries on the side.

Truckers will haul millions of pounds of cranberries for Thanksgiving

According to cranberry company Ocean Spray, about 80 million pounds of cranberries will be enjoyed in the U.S. this Thanksgiving along with 5 million pounds of jellied cranberry sauce. And 99.99% of those tart little treasures will be shipped by truck.

Sweet Potatoes

America also loves its sweet potatoes, with sweet potato mashes, casseroles, and pies making especially prominent appearances on holiday tables in the South. Whether you like them with butter, topped with melted marshmallows, or with just a pinch of brown sugar, don’t worry – the dedicated men and women in truckers haul between 2.4 and 3 billion pounds of sweet potatoes each year to make sure that hundred-year-old sweet potato pie recipe carries on its tradition at your family table.

Pumpkin

Truckers will be hauling millions of pounds of pumpkin this holiday season

Multiple surveys have found that the most popular Thanksgiving dessert is pie, with about 50 million pies of all varieties eaten each year. And a big part of those 50 million pies is pumpkin, with truckers hauling about 25 million pounds of pumpkin this year.

For those of you doing the math, that’s about 500 big rigs of pumpkin trucking across the United States to be delivered to your local grocery store when you need it.

Green Beans and Stuffing

Other popular Thanksgiving sides are green bean casserole and boxed stuffing, with the U.S. serving about 40 million green bean casseroles and 60 million boxes of stuffing each year. That many sides mean a lot of heavy hauls – about 80 million pounds of green beans and 22,500,000 pounds of stuffing.  

Using an average of 50,000 pounds hauled per truck, it’s going to take a little over 65,000 big rigs to get all the green beans, cranberries, sweet potatoes, and other sides where they need to go.

Black Friday/Cyber Monday Retail Goods

Truckers and vocational drivers will deliver to millions of shoppers this holiday season

The food is the major player on Thanksgiving but with all the flash sales and Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals coming up, truckers and vocational drivers are going to stay busy hauling the hottest merchandise to fulfillment centers, warehouses, and then to the customer.

With nearly 134 million people shopping on Black Friday and many of those sales happening online due to the pandemic, plus the nearly $2 billion in online sales that typically happen the week after Black Friday, the ecommerce supply chain is going to be busier than ever.

Thank a Trucker This Holiday Season

Between keeping our shelves stocked with medical, grocery, and paper products during this pandemic and making sure the holidays still happen, we’ve got a lot to thank truckers for. Whether you know a trucker personally or just see one driving during the holidays, a little wave or acknowledgement goes a long way in making sure these dedicated men and feel seen and appreciated.