Where’s My Chicken Wings?

Restaurants around the U.S. are struggling to keep a steady supply of chicken tenders, wings, and breasts on their customers’ plates due to a nationwide poultry shortage.


Lena Siscoe

The poultry industry has a growing alarm over the chicken shortage with National Chicken Council spokesman Tom Super saying there was a “very tight supply but short of a shortage.”

Lena Siscoe, Staff Writer

The demand for chicken has skyrocketed amid the coronavirus. Americans including myself turning to comfort foods and buying more chicken such as sandwiches or wings from fast-food restaurants like KFC, McDonald’s, and Popeyes. Restaurants are having a harder time keeping up with the demand causing shortage changes to their inventories and menus. The chicken shortage means higher prices for restaurants, which can lead to higher menu prices for customers.

Chicken has been the most popular meat in the United States for years. Experts and analysts have cited several reasons for the current shortage. Some are related to the coronavirus pandemic while others simply have to do with the weather. Disruptions in the poultry market and supply chain with an increased demand for comfort food being takeout or delivery food can create setbacks for many restaurants. Deadly winter storms swept over the South in February, halting the work of chicken processing plants as well as other shipment routes, delaying inventory for restaurants.

“No doubt the wing supply is tight right now, but I wouldn’t go as far as to say there is a shortage. Chicken producers are doing everything they can to overcome the devastating impact of Mother Nature when she inflicted the once-in-a-lifetime winter storm on Texas and nearby states – major chicken-producing regions. Keep in mind, too, that this weather event took place in February, right after the biggest event of the year for wings: the Super Bowl.”
NCC (National Chicken Council) spokesman Tom Super.

While the chicken shortage and high demands for poultry may not be reaching serious highs at the moment, we as a community must be aware of the shortage and how it is affecting local restaurants and businesses.