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  • Mr. Turkey Goes to Washington

    Sunday, November 20, 2022   /   by Amy Brown

    Mr. Turkey Goes to Washington

    The Presidential Turkey Presentation dates back to 1863 and the time of Abraham Lincoln but during George W. Bush's time in office, the presentation was changed to the Presidential Turkey Pardon.

    President Biden with "Peanut Butter"

    Every year, two turkeys that are chosen to be served at the White House for Thanksgiving dinner are transported to Washington, D.C. to sit before the President and receive their formal pardon. They then return to a life on the farm to live out their final days. 

    Pardoned turkeys in the past have been given loving pet names such as "Peanut Butter" and "Jelly", "Mac" and "Cheese", and "Peas" and "Carrots". We await to see what 2022's turkeys will be named.

    This year's turkeys are from the Circle S Ranch in Monroe, NC just outside of Charlotte. The turkeys have been in training for 6 weeks so that they will sit nicely on the White House lawn for their pardon.

    Turkeys go to Washington

    Upon receiving their pardon, the turkeys will head to Raleigh, NC to reside at NC State University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

    “The most important part of this whole partnership is the education component,” stated Jesse Grimes, an NC State Extension turkey specialist. “These turkeys will help us educate students and inform the public about modern farming practices, North Carolina agriculture and the importance of the poultry industry.”

    North Carolina is one of more than half a dozen states that are considered to be home to large turkey producers.

    According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the country produces more than 200 million turkeys annually and has an economic impact of more than $24 billion.