ST. LOUIS – Schnucks says they’ve seen bigger orders and larger turkey sizes as families are finally meeting in person and in larger numbers this Thanksgiving.

“A newer trend is people buying hams as well,” says Bill Head, vice president of meat and seafood for Schnucks Markets. “They’ll put a turkey on the table and they’ll also get a spiral ham, or shank portion ham or boneless ham, to compliment the center turkey that they have.”

Head says they begin stocking up four weeks before Thanksgiving to be ready for the rush.

They’re keeping prices the same as last year for turkeys, potatoes, pumpkin pie, and all those Thanksgiving stapes.

“I think during COVID, customers evolved their shopping patterns,” says Ted Schnuck, executive vice president for Schnucks Markets. “Fortunately, we had a great foundation with technology and our delivery service with curbside. But we are seeing increased importance on convenience and people wanting to place an order from home and pop in the store.”

Like Schnucks, a Walmart spokesperson says the big box retail giant is also keeping Thanksgiving food items at last year’s prices to help customers.

Walmart stores also ready for Black Friday sales, which have been moved to more of a month-long event.

“We want customers to have a choice,” says Caroline Finney, Walmart’s director of strategy and planning.

“So, you can order through the Walmart app or in-store or have it delivered to your home. Or you can come into the store. So, all of that allows customers to just have access on that one day and now throughout the month.”

If customers are king when it comes to choices this year, so too are the workers, like at Schnucks with their Flex Force program.

“(It) really helps people who want a more flexible schedule and want to be able to choose their shifts and times,” says Stacy Brandt, vice president of store operations for the grocery chain.

“When you hire-on as a flexible force teammate, we have an app where you designate which location you’re wanting to work at and then you get a notification when there’s open shifts at those, so if there’s a week when you want to more of those and maybe get some extra holiday spending money, you can work more. Or you can work less and it really adapts your availability to the needs we have at the store.”

Both Walmart and Schnucks will be closed on Thanksgiving Day.