INDIANAPOLIS — Whether you are grocery shopping, buying paint or need furniture, your options might seem limited.
If you look around in IKEA in Fishers, IN, shoppers will see products on display.
But flip the tag over, or try to grab a purchase ticket--and customers find that not everything is available.
Then maybe you head to the grocery store.
While it does not look barren like it did during in the pandemic, some areas are still patchy with products. Stickers that say "sorry for the inconvenience" are posted underneath big empty spaces.
And the list could go on and on.
That is why the White House created a supply chain task force, saying while fast growth is good, it also creates challenges. Their findings were released earlier this month.
Why are there issues?
Dr. Matthew Will, Associate Director of Finance for the University of Indianapolis, said we have never seen anything like this.
"COVID has totally disrupted the supply chain," Will said.
And the problem can't be pinpointed.
For starters, Dr. Will says 95% of our goods come by boat.
"Because many of these shipping containers, companies, they rely on the ability to swap out crews. And so people couldn't fly to their destination. They couldn't fly to get off the boat, they couldn't get onto their ships. So these caused problems everywhere in the world. And those problems haven't subsided yet, we're still seeing the ramifications," Will said.
Combine that with employee shortages, impacting both manufacturing and transportation, and it creates a domino effect.
What does this mean?
This means as a consumer, you will likely pay more money for fewer options.
Too much money chasing too few goods means inflation, which is what is happening now.
Revisit your budget with price increases in mind.
What are businesses saying?
An IKEA spokesperson admits they are experiencing delays and that they "encourage customers to check online or download the IKEA app to determine product availability in their local store prior to their visit. Due to system updates and high demand, there is a chance that an item with low stock may not be available for purchase. To check for availability, customers can visit the product page, choose their local IKEA store and click on the Check Stock button."
A Kroger spokesperson told us: "Certain food companies have had production issues in recent weeks, and we’ve seen some delays in deliveries. But, overall, those are isolated matters and don’t constitute supply chain issues. Our product selection is strong, so we can adapt and handle any challenges that arise."