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Is There a Butter Shortage?

A block of butter sits on a cutting board with slices of butter beside it.
stockcreations/Shutterstock.com

Butter makes everything better—at least in our opinion. From being smeared on a piece of toast to being used for baking, butter is a must for many households. But is a butter shortage looming?

There’s good news and bad news. While there’s no butter shorage yet, one is looming and prices are rising.

What’s the reason for the rising butter prices? According to The Wall Street Journalthere’s a dairy supply squeeze that’s making butter more expensive and stoking talk of a shortage. Due to labor shortages and lowered outputs, dairy itself is in shorter supply. That, in turn, means dairy-based products are being affected.

But dairy is the base for several products, so you might wonder why butter is the thing we’re discussing. It’s because other dairy-based products like ice cream, cheese, and milk itself are all given production priority over butter. The result is the lowest amount of butter in storage since 2017. Given the upcoming holiday baking season, those supplies will be even more limited.

Hasense Porcelain Butter Dish with Bamboo Lid

Store your existing butter supply in style.

Those factors, however, don’t mean we’re in full-blown shortage territory, though. While the threat is looming, the big issue at the moment is pricing. The Wall Street Journal reported that butter has risen in price by 24.6% in some areas. That’s over 10% more than the average increase in groceries that has occurred over the past year due to inflation(and is already hurting wallets). With more demand coming, those prices are unlikely to cool down.

The best course of action if you plan to do a ton of holiday baking? Try freezing your current butter supply to make it last longer, or opt for different types of fat to use in recipes. We’re sure your Christmas cookies will still be delicious.

Shea Simmons Shea Simmons
Shea Simmons is the Editor In Chief of LifeSavvy. Previously, she worked as a freelance writer with a focus on beauty and lifestyle content. Her work has appeared in Bustle, Allure, and Hello Giggles. Read Full Bio »
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