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The perfect accompaniment to any cold beer on a summer day is a plate of buffalo chicken wings. But if you have noticed that the price of wings seems to be a little pricier than normal, you’re not alone.

According to several sources, there is a chicken wing shortage. However, it is not clear exactly what is the root cause of the shortage.

Photo: Pixabay

Some have said it’s because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the rising demand for takeout food. Others, such as the National Chicken Council, have said it’s been entirely caused by poultry plant production problems, such as power outages, caused by a tough winter.

Either way, there has been an overall demand for chicken, and the price of wings has gone up over the past few months. For example, in the northeast, wings typically were priced between $1.50 to $1.70 per pound. However, now they’ve gone up as high as $3, even $4 per pound!


While big chains such as Pizza Hut can easily absorb that cost change, other operations such as independent bars have had to pass that price hike onto their customers. Furthermore, there have been some establishments that have just decided to leave chicken wings off their menus full stop.

According to Mental Floss, the owner of the Bull & Bear Roadhouse in Syracuse, New York, Mark Bullis, shared that things are tough. He said, “I cannot in good conscience pass that on to my customers, and even if I tried, I’d lose money.”

Photo: PHERE

While raw wings are experiencing a shortage, boneless wings and partially cooked frozen wings still untouched by the price hike. However, most bars prefer to serve fresh-cooked wings. Apparently, it isn’t just chicken wings that are scarce either, certain food supplies such as foil and gloves also appear to be in short demand as well.

However, there is a little hope on the horizon. The hatcheries that were impacted by the bad weather in states like Texas and Alabama are expected to make a comeback, which hopefully means a catch-up to the chicken wing demand. In the meantime, the only thing we can do is wait and hope prices go down soon.

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