It is confirmed! One lucky turkey gets a free pass from the chopping block and a trip to Mount Vernon [no trip to Disneyland this year] this Thanksgiving, as Barack Obama carries on the tradition of the Presidential Turkey Pardon. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that more than 45 million turkeys are purchased annually to be consumed on Thanksgiving [retail sales of turkey are a multi-billion dollar industry].
This year, the turkey’s path to pardon began on a Foster Farms ranch in Modesto (CA), a first for the company and only the second time a California farm has been chosen as official poultry provider. During the summer, growers selected 25 newborns to raise in a special turkey house with the “Seal of the National Turkey of the United States” displayed on the side. It looks like the presidential seal, but instead of the bald eagle in the middle, there’s a turkey with a wry expression and a little pilgrim hat.
Tune in to watch [usually the Wednesday before Thanksgiving] as this lucky meleagris gets a first class trip to George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estates and Gardens in Virginia and is spared the stuffing and roasting that awaits the rest of his rafter.
Last Year’s Turkey Pardon of “Courage”