Butterball is experiencing a limited availability of large, fresh turkeys in advance of the 2013 Thanksgiving holiday. The company, however, said it still has an ample supply of frozen whole turkeys of small, medium and large varieties.

Butterball's shortage of large, fresh turkeys is being attributed to a decline in weight gains for turkeys at some of its farms. Butterball is evaluating all potential causes for the shortage of Butterball's large, fresh turkeys, and is working to remedy the issue. Meanwhile, it is encouraging consumers desiring a large turkey to consider purchasing Butterball frozen turkeys, which are widely available.

"While there may be a limited availability on some larger sizes of fresh turkeys, Butterball has shipped 100 percent of customer orders of frozen whole turkeys and products are in distribution across the country," the company said in a statement.


If consumers cannot find a Butterball fresh whole turkey at their desired store, they can purchase a Butterball frozen whole turkey. Depending on the size of the turkey, it typically takes between three to five days to thaw. Butterball suggests thawing turkeys in the refrigerator for four hours per pound of turkey.