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Tofu Turkey Thanksgiving (With Vegan Wishbone)

by Sarah Skidmore
Saturday Nov 6, 2010
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Tofu turkey becomes a staple

PORTLAND (AP) - The holidays can be a tough time for vegetarians, but some tofu companies are gearing up to make sure they’re well-fed.

Turtle Island Foods, the maker of alternative Tofurkey, has partnered with frozen food brand Amy’s Kitchen - to launch a new "vegetarian feast" this year.

The all-vegan meal includes the a Tofurkey loaf, which is 20 percent larger than last year’s and has rice and bread crumb stuffing, faux "giblet" gravy and a wishstix - a vegan version of a wishbone made out of tofu jerky. For the first time, it includes Amy’s vegan organic chocolate cake for dessert. It feeds six people and will sell for $19.99.

The product also includes a "Happy Tofurkey Day" card and coupons.

The all-vegan meal includes the a Tofurkey loaf, which is 20 percent larger than last year’s and has rice and bread crumb stuffing, faux "giblet" gravy and a wishstix - a vegan version of a wishbone made out of tofu jerky.

Turtle Island Foods, which began selling the tofu-based Tofurkey roast as an alternative to turkey in 1995, said shipments are up more than 15 percent so far this holiday season. It expects to sell roughly 400,000 units this year. The company is based in Hood River, Ore.

Fresh Tofu Inc., based in Allentown, Pa., will begin shipping its fresh tofu "turkeys" next week.

The company said it’s too early to tell how the holiday season will fare.

Fresh Tofu’s turkey is molded to look like an actual turkey - the live bird, not the cooked one. It includes a rosemary herb gravy mix.

Gary Abramowitz, owner of Fresh Tofu, said that when he started the business in 1992 and competitor Tofurkey made its debut, there was quite a buzz. While that has died down, he says sales have remained strong, and he expects a solid season this year.

"It has become more of a standard, which is indicative of the legitimacy of the product," Abramowitz said. "We still get the jokes, though."

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