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Is There Really a Chicken Shortage?

A woman looks at a pack of chicken in a grocery store.
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Grocery store shelves are still looking pretty bare, particularly in the meat aisle. Now, it seems chicken is suffering from the supply squeeze, but is there really a shortage?

Thankfully, there isn’t a shortage of chicken, however, supply chain issues are still making it harder to get. Tom Super, a member of the National Chicken Council, explained that a blend of high demand, record expenses, and labor shortages have all led to a bottleneck and reduced the supply.

Unfortunately, when you have a large demand and limited supply, you get high prices and smaller inventory.

There are a few factors leading to these issues, but perhaps the most obvious is the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the past two years, staffing issues have abounded in meat plants, and many of them have needed to slow down their production or close down for periods of time.

Of course, there’s also the issue of congestion at ports and low numbers of truck drivers that are making deliveries more difficult as well.

Should you run out and stockpile chicken? No. There is no shortage. However, prices are set to continue rising, so if you catch it on sale, it might be worth buying a bit extra for freezing.

If you’re looking to cut costs, though, now might be the perfect time to try Meatless Mondays.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is an Atlanta-based writer who has written about everything from whether Crisco is a good moisturizer to how to KonMari your space. Her work has appeared in Bustle, My First Apartment, and Make It Grateful. Read Full Bio »
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