Americans will pay considerably less this year for Super Bowl party staples like chicken wings and avocados and substantially more for an accompanying veggie platter, a Gro analysis shows. While year-over-year celery, broccoli, cauliflower, and baby carrot prices have skyrocketed, chicken wing and avocado prices have fallen 73% and 28%, respectively, since last year.
This year’s pre-Game Day chicken wing price declines are a win-win. For retailers, the run-up to the Super Bowl presents an opportunity to shore up chicken wing sales outside of March Madness and the summer grilling season. For consumers, today’s chicken wing prices, averaging $0.87 per pound wholesale, are at the lowest pre-Game Day level since 2002. (Wholesale chicken wing prices are also the lowest since July 2011.)
Those celery sticks that often complement wings are going to cost more, however.
At $1.96 a unit, average retail prices for celery are among the veggie platter items still recovering from the series of atmospheric weather events that pummeled California in December and early January, temporarily lowering volumes out of Santa Maria. Celery — like veggie platter favorites broccoli, cauliflower, and baby carrots — are all trading at or near record highs, as shown in this display. Only prices for grape tomatoes, another veggie platter staple, are near their typical level for this time of year.
For party hosts looking to add a little green to their spread, guacamole will be cheaper this year. Currently, avocado retail average prices are near a 10-year low, thanks to a strong supply of avocados from Mexico and this season’s favorable growing conditions. Mexico provides the US with over 80% of the avocados it consumes.
Until July 2022, Michoacán was the only Mexican state permitted to export avocados to the US. The USDA’s decision to allow avocados from Jalisco, the country’s second-largest producing state, to enter the US has lifted exports to the US above their 10-year average almost every week since, with the second week of January setting a new record.
In 2022, avocado prices along the entire supply chain rode record highs for much of the first half of the year. Both shipping point and retail prices currently sit below their 10-year averages, with shipping point prices at $25.25 per carton of 48-count avocados (the most common size for retail) and retail prices at $0.96 per unit, respectively.
In the run-up to March Madness, chicken wing prices will likely hold firm because the year-over-year increase in bird weights at slaughter has been offset by the small increase in egg set in incubators and chicks placed in growout facilities over the past seven weeks, as shown in this display.