The Grandson woke me up quite early this morning and I couldn’t get back to sleep. So, I rolled out of bed and down the road to take advantage of the “senior hours” at the local grocery stores.
The reason for the go here, go there, go to that other place is that we all know that it has become more difficult to find the items we really want; one needs to make multiple stops (or go without). For the purpose of this post, my quest wasn’t about trying to find toilet paper (that’s back on shelves), paper towels (that also), or even that most coveted of items, Chlorox disinfectant wipes (although I did score two containers!).
Mtn Dew Voltage and Mtn Dew Code Red are TMEW’s drink of choice. She never drank it in the quantities that I used to drink the regular Mtn. Dew (which I can no longer do – my tummy just outright rebels and makes things rather nasty for a day or so) but she likes to have one or the other for lunch and supper.
The problem is that I haven’t been able to find either of them in cans (the fridge packs) for a number of weeks. Market Basket, Walmart – nada.
The last stop was Shaw’s and when I got to the tonic (the old New England word for soda or pop) aisle, I kept looking for them (plus a couple of other flavors). Two guys from competing companies who were stocking their wares, seeing I wasn’t finding things, asked if they could help. When I told them about the MD Red and Blue, one of them shook their head and said “shortages.”
I learned from listening to them that ALL of the fizzy companies are having the same problem. I just thought it was an ingredient shortage for reasons I couldn’t fathom (like for the wipes – but that’s for another post) – sugar, dyes, sweeteners, flavors, CO2 (yeah, that was a thing a while ago), something else? Nope, they all had what they needed for the ingredients.
What they don’t have is CANS. Yes, aluminum cans. Just like us – we can have all the content you’d want but if there’s no InnerTubes, you’re not getting any content. Same thing with Pepsi and Coke and all of the other smaller vendors and private labels – a shortage of cans.
The reason is that we used to recycle all of the aluminum to China. Still do – but China isn’t sending it back (as in ingots). And there are only 4 or 5 manufacturing plants that make them and they are not only scurrying to get aluminum. And they can’t make all the cans that the nation is demanding. As a result, just like when the meatpacking plants got shut down due to WuFlu infections of workers, the fizzy companies have sliced down their product offerings to their biggest selling products.
You can get Mtn Dew and Diet Mtn Dew and a bit of the “seasonal specials” but that’s it. The “lesser” products are being switched to 2-liter plastic bottles – not so good if you don’t drink all that much like TMEW – it goes flat. Not only that, but they are now running into a shortage of plastic bottles as well. So don’t count on your favorite flavors coming back any time soon.
And it hasn’t helped that consumer demand, because of the hot summer we’re experiencing, has shot up as well.
So, who knew that wipes and tonic would have holes on the shelves at the same time!