HARLINGEN (ValleyCentral) — Supply shortages and price increases are happening across the nation, including on this year’s Thanksgiving meal items.
The shortages are seen at grocery stores and local restaurants, such as Golden Corral in Brownsville.
“Shortage, we have been going through it ever since COVID happened. It’s everywhere, you go to the store, things are running out,” said Golden Corral’s front of house manager, Juan Morales.
He said they have been able to find items at local markets and larger retail stores to fulfill the restaurant’s needs.
“Just because I order doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m going to get the whole order that I ask for,” he said.
He explained that he has seen the shortage of turkeys, but also other items such as corn, green beans, cranberry sauce, and even supplies to make their bread.
Morales said in addition to the shortage of items, supplier prices have increased, causing them to make some changes as well.
“Prices have gone up and everything like that, so, our prices did go up a little bit, but not overdramatic,” he said.
To help with the restaurant’s supply and to ensure the customers receive their turkey meal orders this year, Morales said he is encouraging customers to place their orders in advance and offering discounts for early orders.
“When anybody calls us to ask for prices and everything, I let them know about what’s going on. There is a shortage in food, especially turkeys, so I just caution them if they want to try to put the order in ahead of time,” said Morales.
An economist with South Texas College, Teo Sepulveda, said the demand for these items is increasing at a faster rate, causing prices to go up.
“Toys, specialty foods, things like that are going to be limited. The high prices are letting us know, we’re reconstructing, we’re rewiring our supply chain,” said Sepulveda.
He explained the shortage happens because some suppliers do not want to raise all of their prices, making them limit quantities.
“Last year the big concerns were not toys or special foods for special holidays. Last year all the focus was to get all the basics produced,” he said.
Sepulveda recommends people make some adjustments to their holiday plans this year.
“If you have the time, try to start planning ahead and start gathering the supplies, little by little, and that in itself allows suppliers to keep a stable increase without having to push it all at once,” he said.