Supply chain problems you've noticed during the pandemic that are a little less obvious than TP and sanitizer

Continuing the discussion from Taco Bell Fire sauce discontinued?:

Taco Bell Fire Sauce isn’t the only thing that seems to be in short supply due to COVID-19. In the Starbucks stores I’ve visited in Hampton Roads, Virginia, I can’t get flavored syrups for my Vanilla Bean Frappucinos anymore. I normally drink a raspberry one, which tastes like cotton candy.

I went to Ikea a few weeks ago. They were out of my first three preferences for drawers. I don’t go to Ikea a lot, so maybe it’s not unusual, but seemed weird considering their reputation.

Last summer I decided to go ahead and get a freezer and FFS everyone was sold out and nothing was available. After a two month long ordeal with Sears I finally found one through Costco but it still took a couple weeks to get delivered. All in all it took well over three months to find, purchase and have it delivered. Crazy!

Snapple. I have no idea if it’s just in my area or more widespread, but for the last few months it’s but just about impossible for me to get Snapple into my store. Every week I call my sales guy and tell him I’m [still] cleaned out and every week he tells me that he has one or two flavors in.
Also, refrigeration equipment has a 6-8 month lead time on it. Though in that case, I assume it’s just due to demand because all these mom and pop grocery stores suddenly had access to a lot of money via PPP and EIDL. When you’re out driving, look at how many little mom and pop places put in brand new $30,000 parking lots in the last 18 months.

Drivers and warehouse workers (or, rather, lack thereof) has meant deliveries are running really, really late. Stuff that should show up tomorrow, shows up in two or three days. If your normal delivery is supposed to be at 9am (plus or minus a few hours), it might get to you at 5pm. I’ve talked to people that have had their Sysco deliveries scheduled for 10pm. Meaning someone has to go back to the store at 10pm to accept the delivery and get all the cooler/freezer/dry stuff sorted and and at least moved to the cooler/freezer/dry areas.
In fact, with Sysco it’s getting so bad they’re offering people $100-$200 to go pick their orders up at will call.

I’ve only been to Ikea a few times so, like you said, maybe it’s normal. An acquaintance is redoing her kitchen and spent, probably 2 months, driving back and forth between 3 Ikeas trying to get all the cabinets. Luckily she lives about an hour from either of the two in Illinois and a half hour from the one in Wisconsin, which is also right in the middle of her sales territory.

… low volume syringes …

Supplies of low volume syringes have run out in Australia, and apparently it will be a while before supplies recover. Hospitals/pharmacies run independent inventories, so only some places are down to zero, but the supply chain is empty both at the national and international level.

One hospital I know of was getting 6.5 vaccine doses per Pfizer vial by using small needles and small-wastage syringes, but are now pegged back to getting only 5 doses per vial. Given that vaccination in Australia is still limited by vaccine supply, that’s 25% fewer vaccinations per week, and 25% fewer vaccinations per $.

Certain types of seafood, most noticeably crab/crab legs. We go to MD and NJ beaches in the summer, and have ran into restaurants that were unable to make crab cakes, and one that ran out of tuna, all citing shortages and high prices for what’s available. Buffets that would typically have all you can eat crab legs now only offer them as add-ons, for $30-40/pound.

Soda. For a while at least around here Fresca was nowhere to be found. Diet Grapefruit soda from Safeway/Albertson was rarely available. I notice the convenience stores and Walgreens are having a hard time keeping soda stocked. Also juice is iffy at convenience stores.

I’m blaming Brexit for this, but at the turn of the year (when Brexit came into force), my local supermarket stopped selling frozen Canadian lobster, and it’s STILL not on the shelves.

Please Canada, give us a trade deal!

In the aquarium hobby, manajo wands, a device to kill glass anemone pests, were nowhere to be fonnd until recently. A small pump that removes air from filter tubes was also not sold until recently.

That’s another one. I’ve seen our (wholesale) prices on Snow and King Crab just about double over the past 6-8 months or so. Lobster has taken a jump as well. But it’s the king crab that people notice. Someone will grab two or three big legs and then change their mind when the cashier tells them it’s $150.

I think the original quarantine going back to March 2020 turned a lot of people on to the aquarium hobby. So it kinda makes sense that such a niche product might sell out. If you’re trying to deal with Aiptasia, I know a lot of people have good luck with just covering it with epoxy so it starves itself in whatever spot it’s trying to hide in.
Similarly, Versa pumps from Ectotech Marine have been damn near impossible to get. It took me months to get one. Even then, the only way I did it was by hitting the ‘let me know when it’s back in stock’ button on BRS’ website. The time between me getting the email and checking out was less than 60 seconds (I checked), and by the time I was done checking out they were already sold out.
Ecotech Marine has been claiming it’s staffing issue, which seems…odd. I’m surprised they don’t keep a skeleton crew there just to keep products moving (or maybe they do and that’s why these pumps show up randomly here and there). The reason being, that eventually people got sick of waiting for them and went for a DOS pump instead, which means you have to buy an Apex, which means you’re now in the Neptune ecosystem, which means you’re considerably less likely to buy any ecotech marine gear (unless it plays nice with the Apex).

I couldn’t find aqua lifter pumps for a while.
Smearing aiptasia with klakenwasser works just as well, but actually turning them into a puddle of goo with a manjano wand is so much more satisfying!

My wife and I now own a 35-foot fifth-wheel trailer and an F-350 Super Duty pickup with which to pull it, but neither was an easy purchase. Everybody and their mother wanted to buy an RV of some type last year as a way to get out and about during lockdowns and travel bans, and RV manufacturers had a difficult time keeping up stock being delivered to sales lots.

Ford and every other vehicle manufacturer is highly dependent on semiconductors for a number of functions in their products, and the semiconductors are extraordinarily hard to come by. There are apparently tens of thousands of new vehicles in Michigan and other states of vehicle manufacture waiting for semiconductors. We needed a big pickup to pull our heavy RV, and it took a couple of weeks looking in our state and many more surrounding it to find one.

RV and vehicle manufacturers faced challenges with reduced production lines due to COVID as well, which didn’t help matters.

King Crab Legs were $60/lb in my local Kroger just this past Sunday. Snow crabs were still $19.99/lb.

I bought some Pacific Halibut and it was $16/lb.

Here’s another shortage: energy drinks, ESPECIALLY sugar free Red Bull. The Red Bull guy at my local convenience store says it’s due to an aluminum shortage for the cans. How are we short aluminum? Is it a shortage of mining/miners, crazy demand for it or a supply chain issue?

I sell Chevrolet vehicles for a living and new HD trucks are hard to come by in the extreme. A newer used diesel HD truck? Crazy expensive, some over MSRP when they were new if they have few enough miles on them.

Auto dealers are now competing with the likes of Hertz and government entities for a shrunken supply of used vehicles at auctions because none of the manufacturers are making new fleet vehicles for any of them.

GM is sending us 1500-based trucks and Suburbans/Tahoes (these are also in VERY short supply) without active fuel management chips/chips for locking steering columns, can’t order the power sliding rear window in a truck because it uses yet another chip they want to save for another vehicle, and so on. It’s madness but easy enough to understand.

Car makers lost their place in line for semiconductors when they cancelled all their orders and shut down and those orders got filled quickly by the consumer electronics sector which the foundries that make the chips make more money on per unit than the Wal Mart discount the auto manufacturers get

We’re not having trouble with those via Amazon, so it sounds local to your area. Still annoying, I agree.

ham and other pizza toppings dominos has been out of at least 1 or two things for weeks …one week it was bbq sauce another it was pineapple…

I’m in the market for a new car and, as usual, I take a look at the current pricing on Teslas, and as usual, it’s more that I’m looking to spend. A few weeks ago, just for kicks, I looked at used Teslas. They’re even more expensive than brand new ones. From what I read, this is the reason. The shortage of new cars is driving up the market for used ones.
I’m sure there’s a lot of people that bought a Tesla as a toy as well as those that bought one even though it was a stretch to afford it that are more than happy to part with it for a small profit.

A few months ago ham was suddenly really difficult to come by. However, if your local restaurant(s) are regularly out of seemingly random things, my money is on a shortage of warehouse workers and drivers for your local Sysco/GFS/Reinhart etc.

Outdoor patio furniture.

Silk thread and most metallic threads are very spotty at brick and mortar stores in Arizona. Good framers are working 6 and 8 weeks out because they are so busy.

I’d guess a lot of specialized hobby supplies are going to be in high demand just because a lot of people have more time on their hands.