Thanksgiving 2014: A time for family, friends, and the great American shopping debate of 2014

A Guest Post By: Nicole Olynk Widmar & Elizabeth Bryd

Dear Readers,

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we are sharing this exclusive guest-post. This work takes a look at some of the hottest issues of the season and includes survey data collected in just the last few days! We hope you’ll enjoy the post and share it with friends and family. Happy Thanksgiving!


Thanksgiving is an undoubtedly agriculturally-oriented holiday; in fact, the main event is an oversized meal, followed by dessert, and often preceded by appetizers and snacks.  Where does your attention turn as soon as the meal is over and your dinner companions are all in a post-turkey haze?  Turkeys, and travel, and shopping, oh my …

Holiday season 2014, and in particular, the holiday shopping season of 2014 has been hotly debated in the media.  Which shoppers are looking for deals – and when?  We conducted research in the Department of Agricultural Economics at Purdue University and surveyed 620 US residents the week before Thanksgiving to gather insight into plans for this holiday season, including travel, intended spending, and meal planning.  Surveys were completed November 17th-19th 2014 and preliminary data analysis has been completed to provide insight into the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday and US consumer behavior.  Who are these people, you may be asking; basic survey respondent demographics are available by clicking here.