Resources Shortage


Flash Alexander

How many items you’ve wanted to purchase have been out of stock since Covid-19 began?

Covid-19 has brought on new challenges to the healthcare system, individuals and families, and also the local and global economy. This past year, we have seen many empty, bare shelves and “Out of Stock” items online. Only one year ago, a quick walk through the local grocery store would show the state of anticipation and fear much of the world was living in. From toilet paper, to lumber, to ventilators, to electronic components, and even boba tea, many things haven’t gone as planned this year. But, what is the outlook for some of these products in demand?

The cost of building a home has raised an average of $36,000 due to the underlying lumber shortage. At the heart of the lacking lumber problem, lumber prices have increased more than 288%. But the lumber industry’s top companies are hopeful that with the gradual increased production the lumber stock will catch up with the high demand. Erica Carbajal with Conner Industries said, “One, this is for sure– high lumber prices will eventually come to an end. Once supply and demand equalize, building slows, and the lumber supply chain catches up, we should see prices come back down to normal levels.” The lumber shortage has not only affected the housing and building market, but it has trickled into other markets as well.

Another shortage that I’m sure we all remember well is the sortgage of food and groceries that took place last year. This shortage had people especially frightened and concerned about the future. To go to the store and to see all of the shelves, freezers, and fridges empty certainly was not a good sight. But why did it happen? When COVID hit, we all had no idea how to handle it at first. This resulted in businesses going fully remote or even shutting down. This also resulted in people trying to be prepared and stocking up on extra food to be ready for the unknown future ahead. So, with the combination of slowed production and increased demand it put the grocery stores in a really tough spot for business or without any at all.

A newly popular treat is another recent addition to the shortages of 2020 and 2021, boba or “Bubble” tea. The supply chains were already struggling due to the pandemic, but then another unexpected challenge came, a port blockage. This shipping pile up will impact these suppliers even more. Mai Shi, who is the marketing leader of a global boba supplier, according to USA Today, said, “The shortage will become even more of a problem this summer.” So sadly, if you enjoy a boba tea or even tapioca pudding and desserts you may be put on hold for a few months at least.

It is no question that the Coronavirus has affected all people in many ways. From small businesses to global supply chains, 2020 will be a challenging year to bounce back from and some effects are still rising to the surface. Amidst all of the chaos, the change, and hardship, we have seen heroic efforts. For example, the popular vacuum company, Dyson, switched production over to ventilators to aid hospitals in the care of those affected with Coronavirus. And, many other companies have given so much for the benefit of human care and life. So even though these shortages are frustrating and, for the affected companies, very damaging, there will be normal times to come.