These products are in short supply because of pandemic

Pandemic-caused product shortages remain
Posted at 12:38 PM, Nov 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-02 13:41:13-05

It is now eight months since panic buying cleared store shelves of cleaning products.

Many of them are back, but now so many other items are now impossible to find.

It was back in March when cleaning items started disappearing in the initial pandemic panic.

But months later, many items are still in short supply.

Remember the run on toilet paper? Now, stores seem to have too much.

But shoppers remain frustrated by other shortages.

"Sometimes bleach, and paper towels," one consumer says.

"Clorox wipes we cannot find," says another.

So our list of the top products still in short supply begins with:

  • Lysol and Clorox wipes, and other bathroom cleaners. With hospitals and schools snapping them up, grocery shoppers will be the last to get them for a while.
  • Paper towels. The Wall Street Journal says manufacturers have not increased production as much as they have for toilet paper, so the supplies will remain tight.
  • Bicycles.

Shopper Beth Tessler was stunned to find bikes sold out - from Target to independent shops. "The cheapest bike we found was $2,000,"she said. "The most expensive was $6,500."

Store manager Terry Powell says unless you want a kiddie bike, you may have to wait.

"Demand has been through the roof this year,” Powell said. “A lot of people have been pulling old bikes out of barns and garages and trying to get them fixed up."

  • Appliances.

When it comes to appliances, things are not as tough as finding a bicycle.

But if you are looking for a specific French door fridge with two drawers and water in the door, you might have to settle for something else.

"It started with freezers,” Jeffrey Boggs said. “And its gradually getting into every appliance. Microwave, range, anything."

Boggs blames plant shutdowns and shipping delays, but expects supplies to rebound by winter.

  • Swimming pools.

Stay-at-home orders had homeowners grabbing every pool in sight.

They hope to restock this winter.

  • Laptops for online learning.

Stores predict shortages should ease by Black Friday.

  • Coins. People have been hoarding and not spending them, which is really a problem at laundromats.

“My customers use quarters and can't run the machines,” one owner says.

And with more people growing their own vegetables and baking, that’s caused shortages of:

  • Yeast and baking flour.
  • An uncanny shortage of canning jars and lids.
  • Aluminum cans for beer and soft drinks, because we are drinking at home instead of in bars.

Brewmaster Scott Lafollette says can prices are going up.

"If we can't get the cans,” he says, “we can't put anything out."

And that is why you might be seeing more bottles and fewer cans in the beer aisle this winter.

As always, don't waste your money.