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10 Household Items That Are Hard to Get Right Now (and Why)

amie-clark
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Nearly three years after the pandemic began, we are still encountering supply-chain issues. A combination of labor shortages, inflation, and production delays is still making it difficult to acquire all the household essentials we need.

Fortunately, toilet paper is no longer on the list. These 10 household items, however, are becoming increasingly difficult to find.

Pro Tip: If you’re looking to beat inflation, check out our rundown of the best senior discounts that will help you to stretch your dollar.

Butter

Butter is in everything! But can you believe it’s running out? Because of supply-chain issues, butter supplies in the U.S. are 18 percent lower than last year. With inflation, the price of butter has risen by a whopping 32 percent.

You can still find butter in stores, but it may soon be in short supply. If you plan to bake during the holiday season, be sure to stock up early.

Sriracha

We all love the extra kick of spice we get from sriracha. Starting in summer 2022, though, weather and drought have endangered the chili peppers essential to sriracha’s flavor, leading to significantly lower production.

Sriracha manufacturer Huy Fong has continued to produce the sauce in limited numbers, and the company hopefully is on track to restore production in the coming year.

Potatoes

Whether you like them mashed, fried, or baked, almost everyone loves potatoes. Unfortunately, potato production in 2021 was 7 percent lower than the previous five years, leading to a shortage.

Idaho potatoes, in particular, have taken a hit. That has led to higher prices in stores and restaurants, so be sure to take advantage of any potatoes you can find in stores.

Did You Know? Improper food storage can lead to major health issues. To learn more, read our guide to the pantry items you need to throw out.

Turkey

Thanksgiving’s favorite bird has had a rough year! With inflation and supply-chain issues, retailers are bracing for a shortage. Avian flu outbreaks have killed over 8 million birds this year, and the increased cost of feed has led smaller farms to raise fewer turkeys. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, turkey prices jumped 28 percent this year, so you’ll definitely pay more for these seasonal birds if you can find one.

Rice

Have you ever wanted to write your name on a grain of rice? You might have to hurry! Weather and pandemic-related issues have caused problems for key suppliers, including India and the Philippines, which may cause a 2023 shortage.

Experts have predicted that prices could “supercharge” in relation to demand because of ongoing crises related to water and climate change, so stock up on this long-lasting product while you can.

Consumer Electronics

Hold the phone before going to the shack for a radio! The ongoing COVID pandemic has created major issues for the consumer-electronics industry, in particular the production of semiconductor chips. The chips that allow electronics to use electricity have been in short supply, but manufacturers have dedicated themselves to a return to normalcy by 2023.

Pro Tip: If you’re looking to purchase a new phone, check out our guides to the best phones for seniors and the best smartphones for seniors.

Pet Food

Inflation is tough on all of us, even our furry friends. There are numerous benefits to owning a pet, but the cost of doing so is increasing.

COVID-19 and other supply issues have caused wet and dry food prices to spike, particularly for organic brands. Shortages in tin and aluminum and a lack of drivers have also had an effect on supplies and prices. As the world continues to reopen, however, things are looking up.

Tampons

Women just can’t catch a break when it comes to the supply crisis. Consumers started reporting difficulty finding tampons earlier this year, and major providers such as Tampax have had difficulty with access to raw materials and increased costs from inflation and the pandemic. The companies, however, also predict the shortage will be temporary.

Baby Formula

If you’ve been watching the news, you know millions of Americans have been hurt by the ongoing baby formula shortage. The pandemic has had an effect, but a major recall by leading formula manufacturer Abbott has caused up to a 90 percent shortage over demand in some states. The shortage began in February and, despite efforts to support mothers, millions of Americans are still without necessary supplies. There have been efforts to ease the effects, but the shortage does not look to be ending any time soon.

Champagne

You may want to hold off popping that bubbly! Bottles are currently only victim to high demand, but wine-industry experts sounded the alarm on a Champagne shortage back in 2021. Predicted to peak in 2023 or 2024, ongoing issues with the pandemic and climate change are expected to cause serious shortages.