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Forget turkeys: truckers are Thanksgiving's true MVPs

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Roasting a turkey. Eating pumpkin pie. Standing in line at 5am for Black Friday deals. What do these activities have in common? Besides being just a few of our favorite Thanksgiving traditions, none of them would be possible without truckers. 

Not only do truckers deliver the delicious specialty goods that make the holiday special, they do it while dealing with extra traffic: nearly 50 million Americans travel 50 miles or more on Thanksgiving weekend. And what’s more, that often means truckers are missing time with their own families over the holiday. So this Thanksgiving, give thanks for the truckers who make it all possible. And if you are a trucker, read on below for some suggestions on where you can get a delicious Thanksgiving meal on the road.

Thanksgiving by the trucking numbers

  • Americans eat 46 million turkeys on Thanksgiving. That translates into 15,300+ full truckloads of turkey (750 cases on a truck with 4 turkeys per case, which equals 3,000 turkeys per truck).  
  • Cranberries – Per Ocean Spray, Americans consume roughly 80 million pounds of cranberries every Thanksgiving. And 99.9% of those cranberries will be shipped by truck.
  • The trucking industry’s impact on the holiday surpasses the food. For example, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade uses a lot of helium (between 300,000 - 700,000 cubic feet per balloon, to be precise) to keep its famous balloons afloat, and it’s all delivered by truck.
  • Black Friday – how do you think stores get enough stock to meet demand? 69 percent of Americans (or 164 million people) plan to shop over the Thanksgiving weekend. On Black Friday, shippers see about a 20% surge in freight volume, and they rely on truckers to transport it.

Best Thanksgiving meals for truckers

If you’re one of America’s heroes delivering Thanksgiving treats around the country, you deserve a treat yourself. Check out these suggestions on the best restaurants and truck stops to get a great Thanksgiving meal on the road.

Learn more about what the holiday season kickoff means for the trucking industry.

Sources: CNN; TKO Graphix; Ocean Spray; Live Science; WSJ;

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