Nationwide firework shortage caused by high demand and higher shipping costs

WTAP News @ 5 - Fireworks shortage ahead of July 4
Published: Jun. 24, 2021 at 5:19 PM EDT
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The year 2020 was a record-breaking year for firework sales; however, this year, due to high demand, the United States is facing a nationwide shortage.

“Last year I definitely think Covid made people come out and buy fireworks and really just have a big celebration for the Fourth,” said Caycee Wolfe, Business Operator of Wholesale Fireworks located in Parkersburg. “This year I feel like people are still kind of getting over covid and they still have some extra money and they’re like ‘yeah let’s go and get some fireworks.’ "

Robert Hamilton, the general manager of Eagle Fireworks in Marietta, said the demand is overwhelming Chinese suppliers with orders. The overwhelming orders, caused shipping to be delayed,

According to NBC News, the United States pulled 255 million pounds of fireworks from China last year.

“And then with the Covid issue, some of the other orders of shipments that are coming in are just not fireworks,” Hamilton said. “It’s all kinds of other products. There was a shortage on getting the container spot and the product to be made from overseas so that’s the main reason we just could not get the product in time and then the shipping delays.”

Due to the price of shipping nearly tripling from last year, the prices of their fireworks have gone up as well. According to Wolfe, the prices of the fireworks she sells have gone up almost 20 percent from last year.

Hamilton said he has his buy one, get one 99 cents sale going on until June 30th, but says other stores aren’t having many sales because they haven’t gotten enough product in.

“People are saying they got on average, you’re good if you got 60 percent of your product for the year,” Hamilton said. “Sixty or 70 percent. So a lot of people aren’t running the sales like they used to because they just don’t have the product to do it.”

Wolfe says even though Wholesale Fireworks opened up later than other places, and there is a shortage, they are still on the right track to make the same as last year.

“We’re about on the right track to do the same amount, so opening up later kind of put us in a different bracket but with a huge boom next week we will be right on track,” Wolfe said.

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